Former Navy commander enters Florida race to challenge US Sen. Rick Scott

'Scott has actively participated in Donald Trump's war on the truth,' Phil Ehr says
Sen. Rick Scott in October 2020
Posted at 3:01 PM, Jul 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-17 15:01:44-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — A Democrat who lost two congressional races in one of Florida's most conservative districts announced Monday he will seek the nomination to challenge Republican U.S. Sen. Rick Scott.

Phil Ehr, a retired Navy commander who left the Republican Party in 2017, said in a news release that Scott and the Republican Party have become too extreme.

"Scott has actively participated in Donald Trump's war on the truth, and just like Ron DeSantis, Matt Gaetz and other MAGA diehards, he's part of the Axis of Lies that is threatening to tear America apart at the seams," Ehr said.

Ehr has twice tried to unseat Republican U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz in the district that includes Pensacola and much of the state's Panhandle. He lost the 2018 Democratic primary by more than 20 points. In 2020, he earned the nomination unopposed then lost to Gaetz by more than 30 points.

Scott is seeking his second term in the Senate after serving two terms as governor.