Friday, April 23, 2010

Republicans Seem Absolutely Horrified That Crist Will Run As An Independent

Republicans appear even more desperate in their effort to isolate Florida Governor Charlie Crist. Crist is pondering an Independent candidacy in the upcoming Senate race. Polls show him losing the Republican primary to rightwing candidate Marco Rubio.  Other polls show Crist winning or running a close second in a 3-way general election contest.

Several big name national Republicans have moved to support Rubio now that Crist has publicly stated that he might run as an Independent. Yesterday, the GOP sent a stern warning to Republicans who want to support an Independent Crist: do so and risk getting kicked out of the party:

In a memo sent to party officials Thursday, the state party's general counsel decreed that because party officials -- from local precinct captains to national committee members to legislators -- signed an oath to support Republicans, they would be obligated to oppose Crist's unaffiliated campaign and ask for any donations to be refunded.

``Any member who fails to formally revoke his or her public support and request the return of any contributions made to a candidate running against the candidate of the Republican Party would be in violation of the RPOF Rules and would be subject to removal from party office and membership on Republican executive committees,'' said the memo from Jason Gonzalez, who used to be the general counsel of Crist and ousted chairman Jim Greer.
My Take
As a progressive, I would certainly prefer a staunch liberal to either Crist or Rubio. But, Kendrick Meek, the Democratic contender, is largely unknown, and I am not sure that Florida will elect him as Senator.

Crist can provide a moderate alternative to Meek and Rubio. Given the "purple" status of Florida, Crist could indeed win the general election. This is exactly why Republicans are scrambling to isolate and marginalize him.

1 comment:

Infidel753 said...

It will be absolutely delicious if Crist does this. If he wins as an independent, the Republicans will have so ticked him off by their efforts to sabotage him that those bridges will be well and truly burned, and Crist will be a moderate Senator with no meaningful ties to the right.

Or -- his independent run could split the conservative vote and help Meek to win.

Either way, the hard-liners' boosting of Rubio will have cost them a seat which Crist could have kept Republican.

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