Don’t Crown Crist Senator Yet


Don’t anoint Charlie Crist our new U. S. Senator yet.  He first has to get through the Republican primary.


His primary opponent is now former House Speaker Marco Rubio, who’s campaign web site is here.
Based on Republican history in Florida, it will be slash-and-burn primary.  Florida GOP candidates  campaign like Attala the Hun – decapitate the opponent and sow salt in the ground.

Rubio will be backed by a collection of Cuban-Americans, former Jeb Bush supporters and conservatives.  These Republicans are upset with Crist’s embrace of Barak Obama’s economy bailout and the governor’s other moderate positions.

Crist will be driven to the right in a contentious primary.

Then Crist will have to abandon conservative positions as he tries to move to the center for the general election.

In addition, Crist will be running during next year’s legislative session when the state’s budget crisis will get even more acute. 

By primary election day, Crist will feel like a piñata.
If Crist is left standing at the end of the primary, he will be badly damaged.  That will give the Democrats a real chance.


One of the dominoes that could fall in the wake of Crist’s announcement is Broward’s only Republican state House seat.

State Rep. Ellyn Bogdanoff, R-Fort Lauderdale,  is seriously looking at a race for Florida’s Chief Financial Officer. 

Bogdanoff has two things going for her:  She is a ferocious fund raiser and had a successful career in the insurance business. 

If she leaves her beachfront House seat to run for CFO, expect a slew of Democrats including County Commissioner Ken Keechl to look at the seat.  Another possible candidate: Chip LaMarca, a Lighthouse Point commissioner and chair of the county Republicans.

Such a race could pit her against her former ally Senate President Jeff Atwater.  Atwater, of Palm Beach Gardens, also has a lot of experience as a banker.

Atwater and Bogdanoff

If Atwater runs, expect state Rep. Adam Hasner, R-Delray Beach,  to consider running for his seat.

(Personal disclosure: My son, Aaron Nevins, works for Bogdanoff.)

Despite his talk, no one I contacted expects state Sen. Jeremy Ring, D-Parkland, to run for statewide office.  Ring had said he would consider a CFO race.

Ring has no experience in the financial industry and is little known outside of his northwest Broward district, say several Democrats contacted. 



8 Responses to “Don’t Crown Crist Senator Yet”

  1. Beginning Of the End says:

    Two predictions.

    First, Crist’s announcment will mark the end of Republican domination of Florida’s capital. He’s still popular but faces a strong wave of new Democrats in this increasingly left leaning state. He’s got a no win job in Tally right now given the economy and it will be hard to keep his numbers high given the pain he will have to authorize to balance budgets. A window of opportunity is open to extend his political career. He must run for the Senate if he is to survive.

    He will pay a high price for helping Obama’s recovery plan. Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush are going to attack him viciously. In the end, Crist’s gamble will pay off. He will win his primary against Marco Rubio, who will be seen as too angry and inexperienced to lead, and in a close general election, Crist will win go off to the US Senate.

    Second, Alex Sink is a strong moderate Democrat will win as Governor with the help of Obama. Democrats will finally smarten up and close ranks behind her early, avoiding a costly primary. With a Democrat as Governor, a growing wave of Democratic change will begin crashing on Tallahassee. First the House will switch leadership and later the Senate.

    The question is whether Democrats can capture control in time to capitalize on redistricting in 2011. This all important task will determine which party will have the advantage in Florida for the next decade.

    As Florida goes, so goes America so the stakes could not be higher.

  2. Buddy fan says:

    Good reporting, Buddy. This is the kind of stuff I formerly loved reading in the Saturday Sentinel column. How about an update on your lawsuit???

  3. Ideology says:

    Charlie Crist is NOT a moderate. He has NO ideology at all. He “believes” whatever the polls say is the flavor of the day. That is why he is dangerous and untrustworthy for all.

  4. Democrat says:

    Charlie will win his race because the Democrats have no winning candidate. Kendrick Meek is unproven and won’t be able to raise a tenth of the money of Charlie. Who else is there?

  5. Proud Democrat says:

    Unlike the troll masquerading as “Democrat,” real Democrats are very satisfied with Congressman Meek as our candidate. He has been a rising star and forceful leader in Congress. Did a great job as a state legislator standing up to that ass Jeb Bush when he was Governor. He was the national co-chair of Hillary Clinton’s campaign (a sign of how respected he is politically). And he is also a former Florida State Trooper. A dynamic speaker, a great resume, and he’s posting solid fundraising numbers so far.

    Vote Kendrick Meek in 2010!!

  6. newsie says:

    hasner announced last week he is not running in 10′ as his wife is running the campaign of the ebay founder for gov of california

    FROM BUDDY: That was last week. Its a long time until 2010.

  7. Hey Proud Dem says:

    I wish Bill Clinton could be president again but he can’t.

    I wish JFK, Martin and RFK had not been shot. I wish Ducacus had run a smarter campaign. I wish McGovern had beaten Nixon and Walter Mondale, well, what can I say. I have wished many good things over the years for my fellow Democrats. But I’ve always been a pragmatist. You don’t and can’t get everything you wish for.

    Sure, it would be great to see Kendrick or any Democrat to beat Crist for Senate. But that’s not going to happen. Crist is too strong, too popular, will be too well funded, has much greater experience and is more likeable and that’s why he will win. His numbers already tell him that. Deal with it. The proof is he’s decided to leave a secure job as Governor because he knows he can’t be beaten for the Senate.

    Now here’s the thing you need to consider.

    We Democrats would be wise to put our efforts, time and money where it will make a difference instead of constantly chasing campaigns that won’t win. We should focus on the Governor’s race because we can win that. We should focus on getting Floria House and Senate Democrats elected because that goal is possible.

    Let Crist go to DC and join the minority Republican party. Who cares. He will hurt us there than at home. When we take back the State again, we can then replace him. But between now and then there’s other work to be done, work that can and must be done now.

    These are the stakes in political warfare: The best kind of loss to bear is one with minimal casualties. That kind of loss hurts less because you still have enough fight to win other battles. In the end that’s how political wars are won. Fighting effectively the battles that can be won. Get smart. Focus on success.

  8. Crist's An Ass says:

    Crist has done nothing as governor except parade around with his bottle tan, get married and lust for higher office.