GOP Rep. DeSantis jumps into race for Florida governor

Posted at 9:09 AM, Jan 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-05 09:09:46-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- A Florida congressman who has the backing of President Donald Trump is jumping into a crowded contest for governor.

Rep. Ron DeSantis announced Friday that he will file the paperwork to make his campaign official. Gov. Rick Scott is leaving office in early 2019 due to term limits.

DeSantis is entering the race two weeks after Trump tweeted that DeSantis is "a brilliant young leader" who "would make a GREAT governor."

The 39-year-old politician is a U.S. Navy veteran and graduate of both Yale and Harvard who has represented a northeast Florida congressional district since 2013.

DeSantis took a swipe at other Republicans in his initial campaign announcement. He said he would "drain the swamp in Tallahassee that needs to be drained." Republicans have controlled state government for 20 years.