It's Official: Former FL Gov. Charlie Crist Now A Democrat

Voters in Florida aren't exactly crazy about Charlie Crist, but now that they've had Rick Scott, Crist may look a lot better in retrospect:

It was just a matter of time. Charlie Crist is becoming a Democrat.

Crist — Florida’s former Republican governor who relished the tough-on-crime nickname “Chain Gang Charlie” and used to describe himself variously as a “Ronald Reagan Republican” and a “Jeb Bush Republican” — on Friday evening signed papers changing his party from independent to Democrat.

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He did so during a Christmas reception at the White House, where President Barack Obama greeted the news with a fist bump for the man who had a higher profile campaigning for Obama’s reelection this year than any Florida Democrat.

The widely expected move positions Crist, 56, for another highly anticipated next step: announcing his candidacy for governor, taking on Republican incumbent Gov. Rick Scott and an untold number of Democrats who would challenge him for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination.

Florida Dems are very unhappy about this. OFA has done an end run around their process without even consulting them, and pretty much sidelined their efforts to get a progressive Democrat back in the state house. Think about all the races that OFA absolutely ignored. Why support Charlie Crist, who has all the integrity of a used car salesman? (Comparing the two is probably an insult to used care salesmen everywhere.)

One Florida activist told me that Morgan & Morgan (the tobacco settlement law firm where Crist is affiliated and one of the biggest funders of the Florida Democratic Party) have put a "no money unless Crist is your candidate for Governor" string, "and everyone at the top has grabbed hold of the string without thinking twice."

And it's also rather widely known that Charlie Crist has a Jim McGreevy problem. I wonder how the Bible thumpers of Florida will react when the Republicans start pushing the story they kept under wraps -- as long as Charlie was a Republican.


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