Scarborough Rules Out 2016 Presidential Bid, Hints at 2018 Senate Run

In an interview set to air on Friday’s broadcast of Hugh Hewitt’s radio show, MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” co-host Joe Scarborough ruled out a potential 2016 bid for the White House. However, he didn’t rule out the possibility of running for U.S. Senate, in particular for the seat currently held by Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) when his term is up in 2018.

Partial transcript as follows (courtesy of the Hugh Hewitt Radio Show):

HEWITT: How I want to begin by asking, you know, I’ve been named one of the questioners at the presidential debate at the Reagan Library. Is Joe Scarborough going to be on the stand up there? Am I going to be asking you questions?

SCARBOROUGH: I don’t think so. I mean, unless I’m just an intrepid MSNBC reporter who is whispering questions about entitlement reform or something like that, Hugh. Probably not.

HEWITT: So you’ve ruled out running?

SCARBOROUGH: Yes, I think so.

HEWITT: All right, just checking. Last time I talked to you, you were still flirting and do the fan dance with us. But that’s over?

SCARBOROUGH: Yeah, I think it is. I mean, you know, things always change, but now I think I’m pretty much content to keep my head down and do my work through the 2016 election, and then we’ll see what happens after that. You know, I’ve already said at some point, I want to get back into service, public service, and hopefully I can do it while a Republican’s at the White House.

HEWITT: Have you kept a residence in Florida, Joe?

SCARBOROUGH: I do have a residence in Florida. And I have a 23 year old son down there, and my mom’s still down there, so I still get down to Pensacola an awful lot. It’s still home, and it feels a lot more like home, being in New York and Connecticut in April where it’s 40 degrees and raining.

HEWITT: So if Marco Rubio declares as we expect him to do to run for president next year, any chance Joe Scarborough wants to go to the Senate from Florida to replace Marco Rubio?

SCARBOROUGH: I don’t think in ’16, but who knows? In ’18, Bill Nelson’s up, and I don’t think Bill Nelson will be sticking around, so you know, one of these years, I think, one of these years if I did something, I’d probably look to run in Florida.

HEWITT: Great. I made a little news there, Joe Scarborough running for Nelson’s seat in 2018. That’s our lead today.

SCARBOROUGH: Well, you can make that up if you want to. I just said it was a possibility.

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