MIAMI (AP) - Democratic U.S. Rep. Kendrick Meek, who led the effort to put class size limits in the state constitution, is running for the U.S. Senate.
Meek announced his candidacy Tuesday at a news conference in Miami. He's the first major candidate to get in the 2010 race to replace retiring Republican Sen. Mel Martinez.
Meek is beginning his fourth term in Congress. He sits on the powerful Ways & Means Committee, the NATO Parliamentary Assembly and the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee. He also has a close relationship with Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
The 42-year-old Miami resident previously served eight years in the Florida Legislature, where he led the effort to put class-size limits in the state constitution.
If he succeeds, Meek would be the first black candidate elected to statewide office in Florida.