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Rubio: Ivanka Trump will face ‘tough race’ if she wants to be Florida senator

Incumbent indicates he is not worried about a challenge from the former US president’s daughter in 2022

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Ivanka Trump, daughter of and adviser to President Donald Trump, is escorted by Sen. Marco Rubio as she arrives at the Capitol to meet with lawmakers about parental leave, in Washington, Tuesday, June 20, 2017. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Ivanka Trump, daughter of and adviser to President Donald Trump, is escorted by Sen. Marco Rubio as she arrives at the Capitol to meet with lawmakers about parental leave, in Washington, Tuesday, June 20, 2017. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Republican Senator for Florida Marco Rubio on Sunday declined to speculate on rumors that former US president Donald Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, may challenge him for his seat in 2022, saying only that anyone seeking to take his position in the Senate will face a “tough race.”

Speaking to Fox News, Rubio also said that trying the former president in the Senate would be counterproductive and like “pouring gasoline on the fire.”

Ivanka Trump, a former senior adviser to the president, is said to be considering a run for office and rumors were given a further boost after she and her husband, Jared Kushner, recently purchased a multi-million dollar property in Miami.

Asked how he felt about a primary challenge from Trump, Rubio responded, “Well, I don’t really get into the parlor games of Washington.”

Ivanka Trump (R), husband Jared Kushner (C), their children, Eric (R) and Donald Jr. (2nd R), Tiffany Trump (L) and Trump family members stand on the tarmac at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland as they arrive for US President Donald Trump’s departure on January 20, 2021. (ALEX EDELMAN / AFP)

Rubio went on, “When you decide to run for reelection in a state like Florida, you have to be prepared for a competitive race, you run it like a competitive race, so that’s what I’m preparing to run, a very competitive race against a tough opponent.

“I don’t own the Senate seat, it doesn’t belong to me. If I want to be back in the US Senate I have to earn that every six years.

“I like Ivanka, and we worked very well together on issues… anyone can decide to run if they want to.”

During his interview with Fox News, Rubio also commented on the impeachment of Donald Trump, who is accused of inciting insurrection on January 6 when a mob of his supporters stormed the Capitol building in Washington, interrupting confirmation of US President Joe Biden’s election victory. Trump was impeached by the House, but Rubio said it would be “really bad for the country” to continue with a trial in the Senate.

“I think the trial is stupid. I think it’s counterproductive,” he said. “We already have a flaming fire in this country and it’s like taking a bunch of gasoline and pouring it on top of the fire.”

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