DeSantis wins Florida Republican nomination for governor; Scott faces clash for Senate

PHOENIX (AP) — The Latest on primaries in Arizona and Florida and a runoff election in Oklahoma (all times local):

5:05 p.m.

U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis has won Florida’s Republican nomination for governor, with the help of President Donald Trump’s endorsement to overtake an opponent with a long history in Florida politics.

DeSantis defeated Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam on Tuesday and faces the Democratic challenger in the race to replace term-limited Republican Gov. Rick Scott.

DeSantis entered the race in January and largely built his name recognition with near-nightly Fox News appearances. Trump’s endorsement helped him overtake Putnam, who has held elected office nearly his entire adult life.

DeSantis is a former Navy lawyer who won his seat in 2012 running as a Washington outsider. He ran for Senate in 2016 but dropped out of the race when Republican Sen. Marco Rubio decided to run for re-election after a failed presidential campaign.

5:05 p.m.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is heading into a bitter and expensive clash with U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson after an easy win in the Republican primary.

The looming battle between Scott and the three-term Democratic incumbent could help determine whether Republicans keep control of the U.S. Senate.

Nelson wasn’t on the ballot because no other Democrat challenged him in the primary.

Scott defeated California businessman Roque “Rocky” De La Fuente, who earned attention this year by mounting U.S. Senate bids in multiple states.

The two-term governor is leaving office because of term limits and entered the race for Senate at the urging of President Donald Trump.

Scott’s campaign has already spent millions on television ads bashing Nelson as an out-of-touch career politician. Recent polls have shown Scott with a slight lead.

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