If you didn't think U.S. Rep. Connie Mack was a potential frontrunner, just look at the welcome mat of press statements from his fellow Republican Senate candidates Adam Hasner, George LeMieux and Mike McCalister who took their share of shots at him the day after he unofficially joined the race.
Mack's entrance is a good thing for all the candidates because it means the press is paying attention to them after they languished in the shadows of the presidential contest. In the short term, Mack probably takes away more of the establishment votes/cash from LeMieux, a former senator.
From Hasner's camp:
“Normally we’d issue a generic ‘welcome to the race’ message, but there are too many differences between Adam and Congressman Mack on important policy issues. There is no time to waste in starting that conversation with the people of Florida, who will have to decide if another Washington incumbent can solve the problems Washington created in the first place. Adam believes Washington is the problem, not the solution, which is why he’s running for the United States Senate, and that won’t change no matter who gets in this race.”
From LeMieux's camp:
“Connie is a friend. His father was an outstanding US Senator for whom I have great respect. I welcome Congressman Mack to the race and look forward to detailed debates on the issues and our records...
“While Congressman Mack has done some good things in Washington, he will have to explain to Floridians why he voted to raise his own pay several times, why he joined Bill Nelson in voting for a Highway Bill that contained 6,376 earmarks, including the infamous Bridge to Nowhere, and why he specifically rejected efforts to eliminate wasteful earmarks like an aquarium in Connecticut and tourism funding in Kentucky. Florida Republicans are in for a really good debate as we choose our nominee against Bill Nelson.”
From McCalister's camp:
“Let me be the first to welcome Congressman Connie Mack to Senate race. He knows first-hand from his many years working with the Washington establishment how broken our government is and I’m certain that voters will closely examine his record on job creation, immigration, and government spending. As I continue to travel the state talking to Tea Party, 9/12, Republican, and other conservative leaders, I am more confident than ever that they want an outsider not tainted by years of political deal making. I will work hard to continue to earn Floridians’ trust and vote.”