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Former Republican (and future Dem governor candidate?) Charlie Crist endorses Obama

by George Bennett | August 26th, 2012

Obama and Crist in Fort Myers, February, 2009.

Former Gov. Charlie Crist, whose rise as a Republican star flamed out after his 2009 man-hug of President Obama in Fort Myers, has endorsed Obama’s reelection in an op-ed piece in today’s Tampa Bay Times.

Timed, no doubt, to get a rise out of his former party as Republicans from across the U.S. arrive in Tampa for this week’s GOP convention, the Crist endorsement provoked a quick denunciation from Republican Party of Florida Chairman Lenny Curry.

“Today we have seen a repugnant display from a self-centered, career politician. While the people of Florida, and thousands of visitors who’ve traveled here, are facing an emergency, Charlie Crist has demonstrated, yet again, that his political ambition will always come first,” Curry said.

Lifelong Republican Crist was elected governor in 2006 and got some consideration to be John McCain‘s running mate in 2008. He was a slam-dunk favorite to win the 2010 Republican Senate nomination, but Marco Rubio tapped into tea party dissatisfaction with Crist’s embrace of the $787 billion Democratic stimulus bill. Crist introduced Obama, and briefly hugged the recently inaugurated Democratic president, during a stimulus pep rally in Fort Myers in February 2009.

Rubio used a picture of “The Hug” to symbolize conservative dissatisfaction with the moderate Crist and overtook him in the polls. Crist dropped out of the Republican Party in 2010 and continued his Senate bid as a no-party candidate, abandoning his conservative GOP primary rhetoric to accuse his old party of being beholden to extremists on the right. Crist lost the general election to Rubio but outpolled Democratic nominee Kendrick Meek.

Crist echoes his 2010 general election themes in today’s op-ed.

“As Republicans gather in Tampa to nominate Mitt Romney, Americans can expect to hear tales of how President Obama has failed to work with their party or turn the economy around. But an element of their party has pitched so far to the extreme right on issues important to women, immigrants, seniors and students that they’ve proven incapable of governing for the people,” Crist says.

Crist also addresses his Obama hug in the article.

“Pundits looking to reduce something as big as a statewide election to a single photograph have blamed the result of my 2010 campaign for U.S. Senate on my greeting of President Obama,” Crist writes. “I didn’t stand with our president because of what it could mean politically; I did it because uniting to recover from the worst financial crisis of our lifetimes was more important than party affiliation. I stood with our nation’s leader because it was right for my state.”

Crist is frequently the subject of speculation he’ll run for governor as a Democrat in 2014.

For now, he’s practicing law with an Orlando firm. Crist’s picture appears on numerous billboards for the Morgan & Morgan firm in Central Florida. Some say “For The People” while in others the former governor reminds drivers to buckle up and stop texting.


61 Responses to “Former Republican (and future Dem governor candidate?) Charlie Crist endorses Obama”

  1. Peter Schorsch Says:

    The courage – and danger – of Charlie Crist’s endorsement of Barack Obama

  2. I like Charlie, my name is Bill. Says:

    Is Crist still married to a woman?

  3. enough is enough Says:

    This is what can happen when you spend too much time on the tanning tablle!!

  4. SFLvoter Says:

    Tell it like it is Charlie!!

  5. JR Says:


  6. Repubtallygirl Says:

    Charlie who?

  7. enough already! Says:

    Hahahaha first three comments are great! Does this timed release show professionalism or what???? Voters remember cheap shots like this…..

  8. YES!!! Says:

    I love it!!!! The Retard-licans actually think they should dictate Charlie’s every move, well done Charlie!!! Look what we have now…. at least I’m one of the ones who DIDN’T vote for this idiot who’s busy destroying Florida.

    Go Obama!!!!!!!

  9. Floridamermaid Says:

    Wow, I am impressed with Charlie Crist true from the heart comments. I hope he runs for Govenor again. If he does, he got my vote.

  10. Timothy Williams Says:

    Republicans welcomed to Florida by hurricane and former Republican Governor Christ endorsing President Obama. Christ was best Republican governor of Florida as he was above ideology and did what was best for our state. Chist enabled Floridians being able to vote which current republicans do everything they can to prevent Floridians from voting. Yea Chist for being a true leader.

  11. crobb Says:

    He’ll be in with whatever party he thinks will get him into office. I wouldn’t vote for this guy for dog catcher.

  12. what a joke Says:

    Charlie Crist is a joke – almost as much as Obama. He is a failure for a president – he has done nothing to better this country (oh…I know…it’s Bush’s fault.) it is time to rid the White house of this public speaker and replace him with a man who knows the difference between a profit and a loss. the democratic/Progressive party is a joke. Goal is to incite race, class and sex wars. We the People!! (as a single mother with a career…I proudly support Romney/Ryan 2012!!

  13. Jeff Willis Says:

    “The Arlen Specter wing of the party.” Wow, Marco Rubio called that one!

    We all thought that Charlie Crist was a “RINO.” But this is disgraceful! I cannot believe that I actually voted for him in the 2007 Governor’s race. I am disgusted with myself and with the Republican party; for allowing a phoney like Charlie Crist to rise in the ranks. It shows how deep the problems have become within the party itself.

  14. Tom Says:

    I guess that will help Obama lock up the lying weasel vote.

  15. Sweetpea Says:

    I would love to see a crist/sink ticket! Get that retarded gov Scott and his pathetic lieutenant gov out of office and out of Florida!!

  16. Mike Coleman Says:

    Charlie Crist’s campaign & the mis-directed endorsements brought about Governor Scott.
    Crist also had a hand in bringing us President Obama by extending Early Voting in 2008.
    His actions have benefitted both parties and hurt both parties.
    What he does in the future will have an impact upon Floridians.
    He is a political animal who’s actions almost always appear to be self-serving but are not always truly self serving.
    Whether he joins the Democratic Party or whether he becomes Florida’s Angus King (of Maine) Florida has not heard the last from Mr Crist.

  17. Rawhide Says:

    If it were not for Kendrick Meeks this guy would be Senator instead of the media creation called Rubio, who carried less than 50% of the vote in Florida, in fact somewhere around 60% of the voters did not want him as senator.

  18. joel goodman Says:

    This is not an unsuspected announcement from the former a/c-d/c whatever guvner.
    First it was his sexuality and then his politics that were in question. I think this endorsement shows, without a doubt, that his brain is what needs to be examined. To support failure after failure is just plain stupid.

  19. just saying Says:

    Jeb, Crist, Scott….Floridians vote in nothing but corrupt idiots into public office.

  20. On the other hand .... Says:

    Politics aside, he does run some good steka houses!

  21. Floridian Says:

    Another FAUX Republican because it was the only way he could get elected.

  22. Frank Says:

    I did not vote for Charlie Crist as Governor… but he earned my respect when he reached across party lines for his Cabinet members. He puts people ahead of politics, which is something that is a foreign concept to today’s politicans. Just read the comments to see how divided we are. Doesn’t it make sense to try to find common ground between the two Parties and try to reach consensus on issues that benefit the American People?

  23. LRT Says:

    Smart Man!

  24. becca Says:

    He’s got my vote.

  25. Das22 Says:

    And thats you are the Former Govenor……..

  26. dick Says:

    I love it. Talk about two losers. Charlie a hoot. No morals. No back bone. No credibility. He loves the liberal press and the attention they give him. Who a joke. Oh yea. And if the republicans win are you going to switch again Charlie, the pretty boy?

  27. Connie Says:

    Smart man that Charlie is!

  28. greg Says:

    crobb, you have a very short (or selective) memory.

  29. JustMeee Says:

    Charlie’s out to irritate, and he knows just how to do it. He’s washed up in politics, though being the egomaniac that he is he might not realize that, but it’s fun to watch him punk the Rethuglicans just as they’re beginning their orgy of hypocricy.

  30. 4 Crist Says:

    I did not like Charlie Crist when he won Florida. However, the decisions that he made as governor earned my respect. He will get my vote if he runs again.

  31. whasup Says:

    Shucking Chuckles is at it again–seeking his own personal future political opportunity. He should learn there is a difference between “thinking for yourself” which is good and “thinking of yourself” which is bad

    … and exactly what most folks, including independent voters, can’t stand about most of our politicians.

    If he runs for Governor, he should do so as an independent, not as a Democrat. That might show he really has some kind of middle-of-the-road integrity.

    And on a practical level, it would avoid the vast target-rich environment of legitimate personal attacks on his opportunism, from both Dems and Reps, that running as a Democrat will create.

    He lost the Senate race, because he looked like he was just a power-hungry pol who knew he would get beat in the R primary. If he runs for Gov as a Democrat, he will just prove that his choice then was not about integrity, values, and policy, but rather about personal ambition only.

  32. Get Real Says:

    They are both A$$holes
    vote the BASTARD out
    I’ve had enough CHANGE!!

  33. VICTOR LAZLO Says:


  34. KC Says:

    This is the problem with our current election system. Parties should be abolished, just as the electoral college should be abolished – good example of an electoral vote fiasco is Bush/Gore. Who knows what would have happened had Gore been elected. Things could have been worse or better, we will never know, but I think like most of us don’t have a clue as to who this electoral college is made up of, most of us don’t want that vote to be the deciding factor. There is good and bad on both sides of the party line, but to vote strictly party affiliation like most is not logical. You could put an “Adolf Hitler” on a party ticket, and there will be many that would still vote just because the party dictates it. I am not backing Crist at this point, but greatly admire one that thinks for himself and is not bought and paid for. Is Crist this person, I don’t know but am very tired like I believe most of the rest on voting for the lesser of the two “EVILS.” We should be able to vote on accomplishments and integrity, not party affiliation. Is there anyone that fits this criteria, I sure hope so! God help us all!

  35. Absolute Says:

    Crist is almost as phoney as Barry.

  36. Curious George Says:

    Crist and Obama… 2 men on the “Down Low”

    I bet there’s a lot of teabagging whenever those 2 queens meet

    But on the lighter side, Crist’s endorsement is about as important as Snooki’s


  37. Rick Says:

    Crist was a democrat hiding in republican clothing!

  38. Toni Says:

    I appreciate anyone who actually can think for themselves and not follow the dictates of a party line. More people should try thinking for themselves instead of doing as the billionaire Koch brothers tell them they should think. The Koch brothers run American for Prosperity which should be renamed Billionaires for more prosperity for BILLIONAIRES, not the middle-class.

  39. Better Luck Next Time Says:

    Not surprising. After all, “Chain Gang” Charlie does have a special “link” with Bozo Joe “Put ‘em in chains” Biden.

  40. Matt Says:

    TURN COAT CHARLIE!!GTFO!!foreigner & America HATER SOROS funds the DNC & you whine about Koch brothers Toni?Can’t wait till NOV 6th when we KICK OBUMMER out of our house!WE THE PEOPLE!!!

  41. Dale E Shaw Says:

    Funny how Lenny Curry calls Crist “a self-centered, career politician” (negative overtones…). Aren’t they all?

  42. Robert Patton Says:

    Charlie’s sour grapes.BOO HOO

  43. Tom Says:

    Charlie sees the hand writing on the wall with the Vulture/Voucher ticket.

  44. KC Says:

    I know Palm Beach Post will post this, because they did it once before after the fact of a post or two of mine. As I stated then, I will not spend one cent for their paper or when it becomes necessary to spend one cent online. “THEY” are in full control and love the what ever you want to call them on here. Shame on you PBP – this is censorship at its best.

  45. Charlie Crist Says:

    I play both sides of the street. I don’t care which side as long as I win. I will even stand next to a halfbreed commie to boost my chances! I work for Morgan& Morgan. Just vote for me.

  46. T. J. Ewing Says:

    Yeah, we the people as in “we the rich people.” The Koch brothers probably bought and paid for Ryan, the man who loves Ayn Rand, the atheist and who once commented that the “poor are peons!” Rmoney/Ryan, the rich mans wet dream. The crook n chief fraudster governor is about as popular as a snake in your bed and looks like one too. Go Crist. Fire Rick Scott!

  47. LicenseToSteal Says:

    Obama looks like he is telling Crist, “If you were a woman, I would do you right here”. Crist responds, “You provided change for me, I will change for you. Change you can believe in!”.

  48. Bito Says:

    The repubicans are up in arms because Crist defected from them, its like someone defecting from N.Korea, Iran, Cuba, they will use the same tactics as these countries to discredit him, they truly are sore looser, its amazing how many people have been regected to make a speech at the convention in Tampa, GW Bush, Sara Palin, Rick Scott, DICK Cheney, Todd Akins, and many more, its called communist at its best.

  49. Fed Up Says:

    Good for him; run Charlie run for governor. We need him!

  50. KC Says:

    Just so you all know, two posts were censored and never posted because I used the phrase, “Money Talks, ******** Walks.” I thought human brains monitored this website, but I guess not. Anyway, I guess if this makes post, then that is how I feel all government is and it is our own fault for not being more vigilant. And PBP did blackball me one time before and it had nothing to do with language, but thought. Censorship at its best!

  51. KC Says:

    I will say this, through my job I have dealt with politicians and even Donald Trump, and always felt good vibes from Crist not like the rest – the EGO was not there. But, the lingering homeowner’s taxation and insurance premiums still haunt me about his reign as Governor. Accountability starts with us and no one else. People, wake up and smell the coffee!

  52. doug Says:

    Now, I knew Christ was brilliant.

    Now if all the other losers around here would wake up and push the controlling money pushes out, we’d see some change—-for the better.
    Remember a President is only as productive as senate and congress will allow and these jerks in power in the s & c are like my great grand children.

  53. KC Says:

    No one is that brilliant and in politics. Think about it, would you be? These people have to sell their souls to get what they want. If we took all the money spent on all the elections, social security would be more than solvent. It’s the game of life and your in it whether you like it or not!

  54. Heather Says:

    Charlie will keep Ds home. Charlie is the very thing why people hate politics. Maybe Romney is not so bad

  55. DIEGO VIEJO Says:

    License to Steal says: Obama says “If you were a woman I’d do you right now”. That is almost true. What Obama is really saying Stop by the Down Low Club at Wright’s Trinity Church where me match up Gays or come to ChiTown to Man’s Country the gay club that I belong to along with Rahm Emanuel. Charlie I love White men to make love to me. Let’s get together soon, Love Barry.

  56. B.u. Says:

    I’m a republican and crist is right on the money. Tea party is doing the republicans no favors. Republican party is way too right. They lost my vote.

  57. Todd Gaylord Says:

    Charlie has always been a Gay Democrip the gang, he will bullsh*t anyone for a piece of the pie that is what scum***s do.

    They lie, cheat, steal, and whatever it takes.

  58. Todd Gaylord Says:

    You can vote 4 FASCISM AND THE GANGS: DEMOCRIPS OR REPLBLOODICANS and keep murdering our children in phony wars. Or make the intelligent choice and vote for our freedoms.
    I am not voting for the gangs, I voting for freedom.
    Any other choice is for the IDIOTS.

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