Ron DeSantis steps down from Congress to focus on Florida governor race

September 10, 2018 GMT

Rep. Ron DeSantis, the Republican nominee for Florida governor, resigned from Congress to focus on his race against Democrat candidate Andrew Gillum.

In a letter sent Monday to House Speaker Paul Ryan, obtained by Politico, Mr. DeSantis officially stepped down from office.

He requested that his decision be retroactively set as Sept. 1, so that he does not receive payment for this month.

“This is not a decision I make lightly,” Mr. DeSantis wrote. “It has been an honor to serve the people of Florida’s Sixth Congressional District, and I look forward to serving them and the rest of Florida as our state’s next Governor.”

According to the latest Quinnipiac poll, the two gubernatorial hopefuls were virtually tied with Mr. Gillum barely edging out Mr. DeSantis, 50 percent to 47 percent.

James Varney contributed to this story.