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Rick Scott delays Senate swearing-in ceremony

Sen.-elect Rick Scott (R-Fla.) won't leave the Florida governor's mansion early and will instead be sworn in as a senator when his term expires in early January, a spokesman for the governor said Tuesday.

John Tupps, the governor's communications director, said that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTanden withdraws nomination as Biden budget chief Boehner book jacket teases slams against Cruz, Trump Gun violence prevention groups optimistic background check legislation can pass this Congress MORE (R-Ky.) has agreed to hold Scott's swearing-in ceremony on Jan. 8, five days after other incoming senators are set to be sworn into office.

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Scott is waiting to leave his current position as governor of Florida until his successor, former Rep. Ron DeSantisRon DeSantisPress: CPAC vote was no big win for Trump DeSantis approval ticks upward in new poll Trump: 'I can't imagine' any Republican would beat me in 2024 primary if I run MORE (R), enters office.

“When Gov. Scott was elected Governor of Florida, he promised to fight for Florida families every single day of his term," Tupps said in a statement. "Gov. Scott will remain Governor until January 8th, 2019. U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has agreed to hold the ceremony for Gov. Scott’s swearing-in as U.S. Senator from Florida that afternoon.”

The belated swearing in will make Scott the most junior of the incoming freshman senators. Other recently elected lawmakers will be sworn in Jan. 3, when the 115th Congress officially ends and the 116th Congress begins.

The Jan. 8 ceremony also means that Scott's lieutenant governor, Carlos Lopez-Cantera, will not assume the role of acting governor as was widely expected.

Scott defeated incumbent Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William NelsonThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Divided House on full display Florida Democrats mired in division, debt ahead of 2022 Centrist Democrats pose major problem for progressives MORE (D-Fla.) last month after razor-thin margins in the race triggered two state-mandated recounts that ultimately put the two-term Republican governor ahead by roughly 10,000 votes.

Unlike Scott, Bob Graham, the last person to move from the Florida governor's mansion to the Senate, stepped down from his perch in Tallahassee on Jan. 3, 1987, and was sworn into the Senate the same day.