Published: Oct 19, 2010 3:27 PM EDT
Updated: Oct 19, 2010 12:27 PM EDT

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - Trailing badly in a three-way race for U.S. Senate, Democrat Kendrick Meek gets some star power from former President Bill Clinton in St. Petersburg.

Clinton appears with Meek Tuesday morning at a campaign rally at the University of South Florida campus in St. Petersburg.

Polls have shown the Miami congressman running well behind Republican Marco Rubio and Gov. Charlie Crist, who is running as an independent. Some Democrats have suggested Meek should drop out to give Crist a chance of beating Rubio.

But Meek refuses, pointing out that he rallied to beat billionaire Jeff Greene in the Democratic primary.

Meek is a former Florida Highway Patrol captain who succeeded his mother in Congress when she retired in 2003.