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Speculation Continues To Surround CD 4 Race

U.S. House of Representatives

In the 24 hours since announcing his retirementfrom Congress, Northeast Florida Representative Ander Crenshaw has set off intense speculation about who will run to replace him.

But some politicians are counting themselves out of the contest.

The eight-term Congressman didn't say why he’s leaving politics, only that it’s time to turn the page on this life chapter.

Within hours, talk of his replacement dominated social media and the news. But a few names, like Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry, said they have no interest.

“I’ve got a big, bold vision for this city that I’m looking forward to executing in the years ahead,” Curry said.

Curry is less than a year into his mayorship, and he has big, long-term goals like fixing the city’s pension crisis.

So, what about his close friend, Florida Governor Rick Scott? At the same news conference, Scott said he’s focused on finishing his second term.

“The congressman has been a friend for quite a while, before he was ever in Congress, and he’s done a really good job,” Scott said. “I left a message for him this morning. Hopefully I’ll hear back from him today. He’ll be sorely missed.”

Politicos have theorized Scott’s preparing for a Senate run in 2018 instead.

So who’s likely to jump in? Florida Politics writer A.G. Gancarski said on First Coast Connect Thursday a former Jacksonville sheriff is best positioned.

“John Rutherford is looking at it very strongly,” Gancarski said. "... Michael Munz, Peter Rummell, Lenny Curry — they’re all behind him.

" ‘If he’s in, I’m in,’ Lenny Curry said.”

Crenshaw’s seat is one of several in North Florida that are up for grabs this November. 

Ryan Benk is a former WJCT News reporter who joined the station in 2015 after working as a news researcher and reporter for NPR affiliate WFSU in Tallahassee.