GOP House candidate jabs Rubio

Did a Republican House candidate just question Marco Rubio’s conservatism?

It appears some bad blood between Rubio and former state Rep. Dennis Ross will carry into an election year in which both could carry the GOP’s hopes in the Sunshine State.

In seeking to separate himself from his party and emphasize his conservatism instead, Ross, the top NRCC recruit for Rep. Adam Putnam’s (R-Fla.) open seat, alluded to a run-in he had with then-state House Speaker Rubio in 2007.

Turns out, Rubio removed Ross from his chairmanship because he bucked party leadership. And Ross doesn’t sound like he’s ready to forgive and forget.

“I lost my chairmanship by a Republican speaker; my political career was at an end,” Ross said. “Coincidentally, what happened, however, was that people started seeing that it’s the conservative principles that they want to have lead them, that it’s not the Republican label.

“More coincidentally, the Republican candidate leading the conservative movement right now in the U.S. Senate is Marco Rubio, who was the speaker at the time that took my chairmanship away from me. I believe that the people want to see practicing conservatives when they go to vote.”

Pressed on whether he thought Rubio is a “practicing conservative,” Ross deflected.

“Marco is a good friend,” he said.

Tension, much?

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