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White House Cheat Sheet: What Crist Means



Gov. Charlie Crist is running for the Senate in 2010. AP Photo by Steve Cannon

UPDATE, 9:35 a.m.: Crist made it official moments ago -- issuing a statement declaring for the Senate. "Here in Florida, we've shown that when we put people first and work together much can be accomplished, and I intend to bring that same approach to Washington," Crist said. "That is why, after thoughtful consideration with my wife Carole, I have decided to run for the U.S. Senate." Crist quickly picked up the endorsement of National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman John Cornyn (Texas) who called the governor a "dedicated public servant and a dynamic leader." And, former state House Speaker Marco Rubio, who is already in the Republican primary, has already launched a response video to the Crist announcement -- seeking to link Crist and President Obama for the former's support of the economic stimulus program.

Original Post

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist is set to announce his Senate candidacy today, a decision that has national implications and says a great deal about the current political landscape, from Republicans rebuilding efforts to the treacherous political position for governors heading into 2010.

Crist is, without question, the star of the Republican recruiting efforts to date -- a well known and popular chief executive who also happens to be running in one of the largest and most politically competitive states in the country.

He is also someone with unabashed interest in playing at the national level -- pushing his way into the vice presidential talk for Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) last year and regularly mentioned as a presidential candidate in his own right in 2012.

What does Crist's Senate candidacy mean for observers of national politics? Here are five things his decision represents:

A Vote for Moderation: With Sen. Arlen Specter no longer in the Republican Party and former governor Tom Ridge (R-Pa.) not running, Crist is the most recognizable face of GOP moderates in the mix in 2010. While Crist allies note that he is a conservative on social issues like abortion, his emphasis during his first three years as governor has been on redefining Republicanism with attention being paid to traditional Democratic issue like the environment. And, no one who knows Crist thinks he will run -- either for the Senate or for president in 2012 -- as anything but a new sort of establishment Republican; former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee or Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin he is not. Should Crist get elected next November, he will immediately surge to the top (or close to it) of the group of moderate Republicans calling for a change in the way the party defines itself.

A Money Saver: Florida is one of the most expensive states in the country to run a statewide campaign given its size and the cost of its many media markets. An open seat Senate race with a relatively unknown candidate would have cost the National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee millions of dollars with no guarantee that they would be able to hold the seat. But, if Crist is able to beat former state House Speaker Marco Rubio in the Republican primary, the NRSC may be spared from spending any significant cash in the general election as polling suggests the governor would be a prohibitive favorite. That means more money for less expensive states like Arkansas, Connecticut and even Colorado where Republicans believe they have a chance to knock off Democratic incumbents.

The Foil Fight: Any Republican with even the vaguest interest in running in 2012 has a vested interest in emerging over the next year and a half as the most prominent critic of Obama and his policies. Crist's decision to run for the Senate is due, at least in part, to a desire to fight Obama toe to toe in the place -- Washington -- where his agenda will succeed or fail between now and 2012. Unlike former governor Mitt Romney (Mass.) or Palin, for example, Crist clearly believes that a seat in the Senate gives him the best perch from which to engage Obama in advance of a national bid. Is he right?

Govs Running Scared: Talk to any political consultant -- Democrat or Republican -- about 2010 and the first thing you are likely to hear is that no one -- NO ONE -- is safe because of the collapse of the economy throughout the country. Unlike earlier this decade when everyone wanted to be a governor -- budget surpluses, ideas incubator etc. -- the money has run out, forcing chief executives to raise taxes, slash services or both. Crist, faced with a dire budget situation in Florida between now and his 2010 reelection, saw an opportunity to side-step it and took it. Keep an eye on governors like Ted Strickland (D-Ohio), Jon Corzine (D-N.J.) and Tim Pawlenty (R-Minn.) who are -- or could -- struggle to overcome the economic dissatisfaction in their states.

The Stimulus Set-To: Crist was, by far, the most prominent Republican elected official to speak out in favor of President Obama's $787 billion economic stimulus package -- even appearing with the president at an event in the Sunshine State touting the plan. Republican base voters expressed outrage at such spending by the federal government -- taking out their frustration at a series of town halls nationwide on April 15. Crist's primary against Rubio will serve as a litmus test for how politically potent the stimulus package will be in 2010 and beyond. Every poll points to a relatively pedestrian primary victory for Crist over Rubio but the latter candidate is on the right side of the stimulus issue in terms of the base.

What To Watch For:

Tuesday's Fix Picks: Was the Fix the only one who thought Allison Iraheta should have been in the top three on Idol?

1. Can President Obama really get health care done?
2. The Post's Carol Leonnig keeps up the drumbeat on Jack Murtha.
3. Al Franken speaks!
4. Jack Shafer ponders a newspaper-less world.
5. Apple rejects "Jesus" app.

Trippi: No "Doomsday" Strategy: A report by ABC's George Stephanopoulos over the weekend that staffers to former Sen. John Edwards' (N.C.) presidential campaign had a so-called "Doomsday" scenario to sink the candidate if it looked like he might win the Democratic nomination is false, according to Joe Trippi who served as a senior strategist to the campaign. "The storyline that a sleeper cell existed within the Edwards campaign that knew the truth [about the candidate's marital indiscretions] and was prepared to wait out the campaign and destroy it if it looked like John Edwards was taking off is exactly what I called it -- fantasyland," Trippi emailed the Fix. "It's a great way in hindsight to sound heroic -- but it isn't true."

Hastert for Tiahrt: Former Republican House Speaker Dennis Hastert (Ill.) has thrown his support behind Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R) in the contested Kansas Senate race. "Kansas voters have a clear choice in 2010 when electing their next United States Senator," said Hastert. "Todd is a strong conservative leader you can trust to get things done for your state and your nation." Tiahrt is running against Rep. Jerry Moran in the Republican primary in a contest that will be almost entirely defined by which candidate can better appeal to the conservative base within the state. While the low-key Hastert is among the least well-known House speakers in history, he is beloved among conservatives and his support should be helpful to Tiahrt among that sliver of voters. Whether Tiahrt or Moran wins the Republican primary, either one will be favored in the general election given that Kansas hasn't elected a Democrat to the Senate since 1932.

Click It!: President Obama's TelePrompter has a blog. Not kidding. Well, sort of kidding.

Media Matters Empire Grows: Media Matters for America, a liberal interest group that seeks to monitor the media (duh) for elements of conservative bias is expanding its efforts via a new organization known as Media Matters Action Network (MMAN). The new group will seek to fact-check statements by conservatives across the political spectrum; "We are going to correct conservative misinformation at its source -- members of Congress and their allies who are committed to maintaining the failed conservative status quo," explained Ari Rabin-Havt, the managing director of MMAN. The growth of Media Matters comes amid the emergence of groups like Common Purpose and Unity '09 -- liberal organizations that have emerged since President Obama's election that serve to drive the daily messaging in the Washington echo chamber. The dearth of conservative groups that do the same is one of the major problems for the GOP right now.

Best iPhone Apps: ToDo, Mood Ring and Quordy.

Say What?: "If Stormy decides to go forward and run for United States Senate, Louisiana voters will have the opportunity to choose a candidate who has the honesty, integrity and strength of character to stand up for fiscal and personality responsibility in Washington DC." -- A statement from a "DraftStormy" a website dedicated to luring adult film star Stormy Daniels into the Louisiana Senate race.

By Chris Cillizza  |  May 12, 2009; 5:45 AM ET
Categories:  Cheat Sheet Share This:  E-Mail | Technorati | Del.icio.us | Digg | Stumble Previous: Santorum on Specter: "Arlen is With Us on the Votes That Matter"
Next: Can Mitch Daniels Save the GOP?


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Comments

There was another governor, Gaston Caperton, who exhibited some similar 'qualities' as Crist.. he even had a second wife who matched up with Crist's socialite cover girl.. the rumor and innuendo surrounding his loafer lightness never got in the way of his political ambitions, nor did the press ever get too excited about his preferences.

Posted by: newbeeboy | May 13, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse


Why doesn't the media report on this guy being gay? It seems everybody in Washington and Tallahassee knows so why isn't the media interested? He is the governor of one of the most populous states in the Union and a Republican. Doesn't this sound like a good story to break?
==================================

not really a story until you hire your fellow corn holer as Homeland Security "secretary", or gayly tap dance on your toilet stool at the airport for an under cover cop.

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | May 12, 2009 11:01 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if he REALLY, I MEAN REALLY.... wants to move this country forward. Seems more of a Veepster, in a the mold of Agnew, not Dead Eye Dick.

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | May 12, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Why doesn't the media report on this guy being gay? It seems everybody in Washington and Tallahassee knows so why isn't the media interested? He is the governor of one of the most populous states in the Union and a Republican. Doesn't this sound like a good story to break?

Posted by: aviscardo | May 12, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Here take a look at Jake's "party affiliation"

http://www.aipca.org/

* We Acknowledge the Creator’s Gracious Gifts

* Declaration of Independence Rights are God-Given

* God-Given Duties to Individuals

* Our Constitution Enables Us to Protect Our Rights and Fulfill Our Duties

* Rights and Duties of Association, Including that Forceful Association—Government

* The Constitution: the Original Contract that America has with Itself

* Freedom from "Liberalism"

* The Protection of Life, and the Duties and Rights of Families

* Marriage Between a Man and a Woman

* The Individual and Common Defense

* Opposition to Illegal Immigration and
Our Great Pro-Life Constitution

* Public Servants, Not Public Masters! All Governments Under God

Yer basic shopping list of gooper issues.

I wonder how long before humanity was extinct if these guys ever got any power?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | May 12, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

jakey = zoukie?

Hmmm........the lack of intelligence IS remarkably similar............

Posted by: jasperanselm | May 12, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

on another thread, jasper..

maybe the Petroleum Institute and the Club for growth stopping paying zouk. maybe jake is a replacement.

Posted by: drindl | May 12, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Pretty quiet in here today without jakey.

Whatever happened to my pal zoukie? Anybody know? Drindl? Nemo?

Posted by: jasperanselm | May 12, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Does being Crist being gay hurt his chances in a GOP primary? Surely the Club for Growth candidate (Marco Rubio) won't be happy about that.
.
http://www.towleroad.com/2009/05/will-florida-get-a-gay-senator-charlie-crist-to-announce-run.html


Posted by: DrainYou | May 12, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

What would Wanda Sykes say about Crist?

Posted by: newbeeboy | May 12, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

well, he does look real skinny

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | May 12, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Why does WaPo persist in ignoring the Pink Elephant in the room, regarding the documentation of Crist's dubious heterosexuality in Kirby Dick's OUTRAGE? A closeted Senator with access to sensitive information is a security risk to this country.

Posted by: bigolpoofter | May 12, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Wow, Chris,

Talk about fast service! Great piece on Crist, although not partisan enough to placate the 'commentocracy', apparently.

Someone suggested that Debbie Wasserman-Schultz might be roped into opposing Crist. Is that really possible? Would her recent bout with cancer be a limiting factor? Is she too much of a Liberal to have traction in FL? Let's not forget the Panhandle voters.

I must say, the times I've seen her, she has been extraordinarily articulate and on the 'qui vive', but one wonders if she is 1., interested in getting into the race in the first place and 2., what her prospects against Crist would be. If Rubio somehow wins the primary, Wasserman-Schultz would likely be able to triumph easily. Fascinating race already!

Back to Crist. I couldn't care less if he has relationships with men, or women other than his wife, or both, but it's SO dangerous for a high profile politician to have a 'secret' like that--if indeed there is any truth to the swirl of rumours.

In this way, it IS like Edwards in the sense that it's politically explosive. I wish the US electorate were more mature about politicians' private lives (even that scum David Vitter's), but there's a long way to go before sexual orientation and infidelity become 'ho-hum' subjects.

Posted by: sverigegrabb | May 12, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Crist is what some call a RINO. His attitude towards gay right is "live and let live." As a Floridian, I can't imagine any megachurch pastor supporting Crist. Yes, he won last time. But the Florida GOP, like the national party, has moved even farther to the right. Yes, he can win the general election. But the GOP primary against an extreme right Cuban Catholic?

Rubio will beat him to death with Terri Schiavo and gay rights. As well as that Muslim socialist Obama.

So the real issue is whether any RINO can win the GOP primary.

Posted by: Garak | May 12, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I don't think it really matters if Crist is gay or not. The anti-gay message coming from him is repellant enough all by itself, some hypocrisy or self-hatred really doesn't make that much difference. Too many Americans have moved past that ancient bigotry, too many Americans know someone gay or have seen gay characters in sitcoms and all the old canards about threatening marriage or recruiting children don't matter a hill of beans outside the 21-percenters.

He'll fail on his own two feet.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | May 12, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

i'm pausing for laughter....


chris - what's wrong with the FIX today?

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | May 12, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Crist is gay. His recent marriage of convenient is silly. He needs to come out and call it a day.

Posted by: Simon2 | May 12, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

PatrickNYC1,

I think the reason Chris did not “out” Crist is that he is married to a woman and he has not being proven to be of a different orientation. However, last I checked Edwards was proven to have an affair so you are comparing apples and oranges. I would also note that I have seen people on this blog refer to Chris as having another orientation so maybe he can feel for a guy who is potentially wrongly accused.

You mentioned yesterday the outrage over why Rush never spent any time behind bars for his illegal activities; however, I was wondering why you are not so concerned about Patrick Kennedy’s lack of jail time in his addiction and poor driving skill. And while we are act it, why did Ted not spend any jail time when inadvertently killing someone. The reason these men spent no time behind bars is that they all have money and influence…imagine that…please spare me your silly outrages Chris does an excellent job trying to be as non-partisan as he can.

Posted by: sltiowa | May 12, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

The new movie "Outrage" is a real problem for Crist. Not only the movie, but even some Florida newspapers are exposing Crist's hypocrisy as a closet case who supports anti-gay legislation.

The Radical Right is responsible for waging the culture war, but they're losing because it's mostly phony and hypocritical. For example, the main reason closeted politicians like Charlie Crist endorse stridently anti-gay policies (such as Florida's Amendment 2, which outlawed BOTH gay marriage AND civil unions) is that they're anxious to conceal their sexual orientation. The anti-gay closet cases take such insincere positions on gay rights because they'll do whatever it takes to preserve their power and careers, and to ward off suspicions about their personal lives. They also use a marriage of convenience (Crist's fake marriage reminds me of Larry Craig's phony marriage) to cover up the truth.

When such hypocrisy is exposed to evangelical voters, they realize they're being duped and exploited by the Republican Party.

Posted by: fugitivenyc | May 12, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Great - the guy who took the H out of Christ is running for Senate? There's no I in team, but there is me!!!

Posted by: DontGetIt | May 12, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

i think crist is toast. Too sane for his party...

"Rubio began telegraphing his attacks against Crist even before the governor’s formal announcement. In an interview with POLITICO, he singled out Crist for abandoning conservative principles and compared the governor to moderate Republican Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine and Republican-turned-Democrat Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania.

“If we’re offering the same thing as the Democrats, but with different packaging, what’s the point in having a Republican Party?” Rubio said.“I’m going to offer Floridians a clear, consistent, authentic small-government choice in the primary.”

Indeed, Rubio expects the primary to receive national attention as a referendum between the party’s moderate and conservative wings. He just received a glowing profile in the Weekly Standard, which called him the “perfect recruit for statewide office.”
--------------------------------------

I really, really hope the GOP continues to cast Snowe and Collins as being Judas like turncoats.

Please, please keep demonizing and alienating them at every turn. Also, try please, please get rid of those nasty RINOs during the next applicable GOP primary. The Democrats could always use a 61st and 62nd senator!

I swear I sometimes think that the push to purge RINOs from the GOP - even if that means an electoral loss - was a scheme hatched by Democrats who managed to infiltrate the GOP at the highest levels.
It would have been an absolute brilliant bit of Machiavellian political maneuvering.

Sadly, however, I think it's just due to group think, false consensus bias, and the echo chamber effect. In which case, there's nothing brilliant about it.

Posted by: cjpotter19 | May 12, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse


i think crist is toast. Too sane for his party...

"Rubio began telegraphing his attacks against Crist even before the governor’s formal announcement. In an interview with POLITICO, he singled out Crist for abandoning conservative principles and compared the governor to moderate Republican Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine and Republican-turned-Democrat Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania.

“If we’re offering the same thing as the Democrats, but with different packaging, what’s the point in having a Republican Party?” Rubio said.“I’m going to offer Floridians a clear, consistent, authentic small-government choice in the primary.”

Indeed, Rubio expects the primary to receive national attention as a referendum between the party’s moderate and conservative wings. He just received a glowing profile in the Weekly Standard, which called him the “perfect recruit for statewide office.”

Posted by: drindl | May 12, 2009 1:21 PM | Report abuse

It will be fun to watch the GOP theofascists' and wing nuts' spasms of apoplexy when Crist is finally outed once and for all. Bwaaahaaaa.

Posted by: checkered1 | May 12, 2009 1:17 PM | Report abuse

The cult's chief programmer speaks:

"Earlier today, ThinkProgress highlighted NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions’ (R-TX) claim that President Obama is intentionally trying to “‘diminish employment and diminish stock prices‘ as part of a ‘divide and conquer’ strategy to consolidate power.” Sessions’ paranoid theory got a powerful endorsement today from the de facto leader of the conservative movement, Rush Limbaugh. Limbaugh declared that “the objective is unemployment.” “Think forced reparations here if you want to understand what actually is going on,” added the right-wing talker."

I'm sure we'll soon be hearing about 'reparations' -- for slavery no doubt -- on this board from our koolaid drinkers.

Posted by: drindl | May 12, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Crist is not the beginning of anything, he's the end of the trend.

He's the last Specter Republican to advance, a dying breed.

Former Vice President Dick Cheney, last Sunday, said given the choice between agreeing with a man who served his nation in Vietnam, rose to the rank of general, was chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and served as the Secretary of State of the United States of America, and a talk-radio host, Cheney said he'd go with the talk-radio whutshizname.

In that environment, Crist is counter-trend, not the trend.

Crist may even win, but his seat in the Senate will not be a school of moderate Republican politics, but a museum to it.

He'll not be remembered as the first moderate Republican of a new breed, but the last of an extinct species.

Posted by: 1EgoNemo | May 12, 2009 12:54 PM | Report abuse

"[now] is as good a time as any for citizens to dig in their heels, and demand that our views, values and interests, and not those of the politicians and business interests, be listened to."

==

Newsflash soldier, you guys are in no position to demand anything. It's your party that's gone off the cliff and the only ideas you guys bring to the table are the ones that got us into this mess in the first place. Just take your seat and mutter to yourselves about tyranny and teleprompters and free markets and stay out of the way while the reality-based community mops up your incontinent messes.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | May 12, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Charlie Christ is known for being a moderate voice of reason in a hyper-partisan political environment.

Therefore, he doesn't have a chance in the Republican primary.

One only has to read the comments of hard right supporters on this board to realize that he is deeply unpopular with the increasingly radical Republican base. They want an arch-conservative who treats the word "compromise" as if it were a four letter word. They want a rigid ideologue, not a flexible pragmatist.

I have no doubt in my mind that Fox News, Limbaugh, and their fellow travelers will do everything within their power to scuttle Crist's nomination so that a more radical conservative will get the nomination - a person who will please the base but will be as electable as say, Toomey in PA. It will be a nice symbolic gesture but an exercise in futility.

As a Democratic supporter I'd like to say this to all the hard right Republicans who are dead set on purging their party of moderates - thank you.

By cutting off your nose to spite your face and by turning on each other to an unprecedented degree, you're making things incredibly, incredibly easy for the democrats. They just have to sit back and let the right devour itself and then swoop in and pick of the pieces.

So for all your hard-right Republicans out there, Purge On!

Posted by: cjpotter19 | May 12, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse


"Conservatives, at least true conservatives, won't vote for Charlie. Indeed, following the Spector betrayal, RINO's like Crist would be better served to run under their true color (liberal)."

GO FOR IT!

As a democrat, i'm going to love watching this. The conservative movement seems destined to condemn itself to the dustbin of history. And that is exactly where it belongs.

Posted by: drindl | May 12, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

It's truly bizarre (but coming from an Austin Resident, totally understandable) that anyone would suggest that KBH would be the best candidate in Texas Gubernatorial race. Even Kinky Friedman, now running as a Democrat, would be a better choice than RINO Hutchison. Indeed, I'd suggest that Governor Perry, despite all his many, many, many,,,,flaws, would still be e better candidate for "real Texans" (and not just those yankee's who migrated to Austin so they could oppress their Texas bretheren)! Better the moron you know than a self serving, bottom dealing old hag!

Posted by: edweirdness | May 12, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Interesting - appears that if he wins we have another Gay Governor. Now if he would just open the closet a little and let some fresh air and new ideas in I am sure he would feel so much better.

Posted by: peterdc | May 12, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Conservatives, at least true conservatives, won't vote for Charlie. Indeed, following the Spector betrayal, RINO's like Crist would be better served to run under their true color (liberal). This man's lust for power is only exceeded by his willingness to walk over anyone who get in his way. My real concern is how John Cornyn expects to get re-elected in Texas after licking down the likes of Spector and Crist? Folks it may take a few legislative sessions, and all our citizens will doubtless suffer enormously at the hands of Democrats, but conservatives are no longer the lackey's of the Republican party, and we will not vote Republican simply to keep Democrats from doing even more damage. Our failures have been in electing officials who "talk" but never seem to "walk" the walk. Now, with the economy falling off a cliff, and Democrats and RINO's bulldozing trillions over the same cliff, is as good a time as any for citizens to dig in their heels, and demand that our views, values and interests, and not those of the politicians and business interests, be listened to.

Posted by: edweirdness | May 12, 2009 12:38 PM | Report abuse

The Orlando Sentinel is polling its readers about the senatorial race in Florida. At this time, Crist is coming in third put of the four major candidates.

Posted by: marmac5 | May 12, 2009 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Charlie can get in the Senate in time to pay for the huge liability Crist has placed on the public with his terrible Hurricane insurance.

I am glad that people in Virginia and Maryland will help rebuild my beachfront home in Florida.

Posted by: jdcw | May 12, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

I must admit I am really confused. Crist is the favorite to win the Florida Senate seat, hmm are we all sure the poll's are not fixed for a republican??? It would seem to me that if a favorite was out in the field it would be Debbie Wasserman. Woman are great candidates, & Debbie is an outstanding House member as well as an outstanding person.(OK she backed Hilary, one mistake is allowed :) Bottom line is I hope the religious Confederate right wing republican wins the nomination because it will make Debbie an even more contrasting person to run & win then she wold against Crist.

Posted by: MrReal | May 12, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Chris: I forgot to ask if his press conference was held at the Bill Clinton Presidential Library? The sign in the background clearly says the BILL HISTORY SYSTEM.

Posted by: bulldog6 | May 12, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

The press seems to be happy with the word moderate when it comes to elected officials. True be known a moderate is someone with out the courage to act as they should & is more interested in pleasing the money people who help then get elected then acting for the benefit of the people. I really have nothing good or bad about Chist except to say he stands for being elected, that much I am sure of. When we have in our do nothing Senate people like Specter or Crist we have more of the water it down, lets do nothing, staus stays the same going on. This nation needs progressives elected into office that will for the first time in many decades do something to bring this country around to a place where the lower & middle income earners have something to look forward t rather then watching the wealthy become more & more wealthy.

Posted by: MrReal | May 12, 2009 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Why is it OK for you to mention John Edwards affair in your post Chris but not any of the story of Crist being a closet case? Double standards, which is the basis of the film Outrage. Shame on you sir.

Posted by: PatrickNYC1 | May 12, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

The best card in the Democrats' hand is the GOP primaries--particularly those in states with high media costs.

With Crist in the race, Rubio will have to decide whether the stimulus support, the state's shaky finances and questons about his personal life will be sufficient ammo to overcome Crist's name recognition.

I don't know how old Rubio is, but my impression is he might withdraw to fight another day. That would save Crist the bother and cost of the primary, making him a prohibitive favorite in the general. But egos are involved, and Crist has given any primary competitor quite a number of issues on which to attack him to the conservative base.

If the Crist-Rubio primary campaign happens, it will be interesting to see which candidate nearby leaders like Barbour and Jindal and Sanford (or Larry Craig) will support--or demur.

Posted by: bulldog6 | May 12, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Well, you're right about that, chrisfox-- it really is an alternate reality which rightwingers inhabit. They really do beleive in stuff that has absolutely no factual basis whatsoever. it's a religion -- a cult, actually. And they are able to maintain this belief system precisely because an entire media structure exists to maintain it. Not only Fox and talk radio, but many element of the mainstream media treat what they say as if it were simply another point of view rather than a complete illusion, and that imbues it with credibility. Even Cilliza here contributes to the idiocy by bleating nonsense like this:

"The dearth of conservative groups that do the same is one of the major problems for the GOP right now."

There are literally thousands of talk radio shows, blogs, newspapers, [hello, WASHINGTON TIMES] that exist for no other reason than to catapult the propaganda.

The 'major problem' for the GOP is that since they managed to collapse the economy, a LOT more people are seeing the conservative movement has no clothes. Nor any ideas, values, principles or anything else but greed and selfishness.

Posted by: drindl | May 12, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Once again, Chris Cillizza's hopes and wishes for a GOP comeback shines through. When will the WaPo get over it and realize that the GOP isn't coming back? This talk of another GOP "moderate" saving the party is bordering on delusional.

Posted by: PutDownTheKoolaid | May 12, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Crist is a superb manager and a pragmatist in policy. I'm a democrat who is glad he is running. I have no doubt he will buck to obstructionist wing of the Republican senate, and attempt to work with the administration on matters of substance.

Far more fascinating will be the reaction of the Republican party base to his inevitable victory. Crist is just to the left of McCain in ideology; look for Powell to publicly endorse him - and it is likely in a national spotlight, that his sexuality will become an issue. Will Republicans chug the kool-aid again and disavow a popular Republican candidate for violations of litmus? I can't wait to find out.

Posted by: bidalah | May 12, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

LOL -- we sure get some of the most brainwashed cultists over here. It would be funny if it wasn't so pathetic. But, hopefully morons from the base like this will ensure a Democratic victory in Florida.

Posted by: drindl

==

Remember when some swaggering Bush enabler sneered at people who "study reality" and went on to say that his idiot administration "created their own reality," and while the scholars of reality were studying it, they would be busy creating yet another new reality?

Well, they done created their own reality, a parallel universe alongside the actual one, only problem is that it isn't physically real, it resides only in the 21-percenters' addled heads.

Make no mistake, these yahoos believe this crap. They really do believe that Obama is some sort of über-leftist tyrant, that there are peasant collectives being set up in the "heartland," that Obama is handing all the nucular secrets over to that guy Al Kaida.

Hook, line, and sinker. It's called Obama Derangement Syndrome, and we'll probably have to set up federal clinics to treat it, wards full of wild-eyed goopers thrashing against their restraints and hallucinating socialism, yapping about teleprompters and birth certificates.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | May 12, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse


"The only thing that a Crist candidacy signals is a another tax and spend politician is running to take more of our money for their pet rocks (projects) BHO's Alinsky-aligned, Chomsky-blessed, Marxist, Leninist, Maoist social welfare collectivism"

LOL -- we sure get some of the most brainwashed cultists over here. It would be funny if it wasn't so pathetic. But, hopefully morons from the base like this will ensure a Democratic victory in Florida.

Posted by: drindl | May 12, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

The guy who stands to lose face in Florida politics is Jeb Bush, an early Rubio backer.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 12, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

What "The Fix" you DIDN'T mention is the continuing shadow of rumors about Crist's true sexual orientation - many in the gay community call his marriage a "sham" for political reasons, and true or not, they will go after him on it.

Posted by: wooflix | May 12, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Well, this is the worst news the Democrats have gotten in a while. I'm holding on to hope that Crist gets primaried out. Let's see.

Posted by: DDAWD | May 12, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

What it means is that we have another idiot repugnican running for office in a state full of morons.

Posted by: adrienne_najjar | May 12, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

BHO's Alinsky-aligned, Chomsky-blessed, Marxist, Leninist, Maoist social welfare collectivism...

==

Oh shut up you fool

Posted by: chrisfox8 | May 12, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

"Here in Florida, we've shown that when we put people first and work together much can be accomplished, and I intend to bring that same approach to Washington,".

Oh really? How does your hypocrisy put people first when you're working from your dark, secret closet to deny Constitutional rights to OPENLY gay, responsible, honest and proud Floridians Charlie??

Posted by: Rich393 | May 12, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Watch the GOP excoriate Crist for not being crazy enough. The GOP has settled on ideological purity instead of winning elections and they don't like their members moving to the left of Limbaugh and Cheney. With both these uh men inviting as respected a figure as Colin Powell to leave the party, Crist's slight nudge toward the center will be greeted with bared teeth and howls of rage.

Especially if he starts sounding environmental. Nothing seems to enrage the filth like a desire to slow down the destruction of our world.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | May 12, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

A Crist campaign will be very interesting once the outing process has been finished (yes, he's gay or bi-sexual) and the GOP is faced with having to support a gay man for a Senate seat.

If he plays it right (and depending on his past comments on gay issues) Crist may still have a shot at winning. BUT the GOP will be between a rock and hard place. Support the Gov. and lose more of the base? Or keep up the Limbaugh/Cheney strategy and do everything possible to defeat Crist in the primaries?

The party can come off either as hypocrites or bullies. But I guess that's what you get when your party is run by hypocritical bullies. Or bullying hypocrites.

It's fun watching the GOP squirm with discomfort.

Posted by: bigbrother1 | May 12, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

If the Reublican Party's qualification for its Presidentiabili now is to be a permanent vocal critic and opponent of the current President, nobody who is serious about running for President in 2012 should even let his name be whisperred in the corridors of the Party's small mansion. He also ought to stay out of the Big Tent as much as possible. Assuming Obama is somewhat successful in turning around the decline of the economy, and continues his success in returning America's standing in the world community, having been an unsuccessful nag in service to the republican Party is unlikely to give any cred to whoever has to run against Obama in the next Presidential election.

So any front runner who buys into the current un-loyal opposition business must be hoping for abject failure, again not a position from which to launch a campaign based on being for the people in general.

These are all meaningless preliminary bouts between has been and never will be low level pugs. The heavyweights scheduled for the main event are sitting quietly in their private waiting rooms, hoarding cash and letting the never will bes beat each other's brains out for the pittance purses and minor notoriety they get for entertaining the rabid masses waiting for the real thing.

Posted by: ceflynline | May 12, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

One of his nicknames in FL:
Chaingang Charlie

Posted by: newbeeboy | May 12, 2009 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Yes, Crist is a popular governor here in Florida. But, he doesn't run the state -- the legislature does. And the legislature has run it right into the ground.

Posted by: marmac5 | May 12, 2009 8:15 AM | Report abuse

Crist's popularity will free fall in the Sunshine State. Residents will think that Crist is simply abandoning them for his own political ambitions. Wait...he is!

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | May 12, 2009 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Crist would certainly be a formidable candidate, but he has to get through the Republican primary and Rubio first. It should be a telling assessment for the Florida Republican party, not only because of Crist's moderate views but because of the open "secret" that Crist is gay. How long before Rubio's campaign starts trying to pull off Crist's beard?

Posted by: RookNYC | May 12, 2009 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Crist is in his 50s.

Stormy Daniels would be a change agent, and LA is probably the only state where she might be taken seriously by a significant portion of the electorate because she IS a porn star. Otherwise, LA will probably re-elect Vitter, who is a closet porn star.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | May 12, 2009 8:08 AM | Report abuse

So what happened to the GOP's rebirth with "new blood" and "new ideas" to capture younger voters (under 75 years old)?

How old is Crist, 75?

Yup, that Michael Steele is a genius!

Heck, even that "Joe the Plumber" has jumped ship.

Palin-Jindal 2012!

LoL

Posted by: free-donny | May 12, 2009 8:03 AM | Report abuse

While TX is not yet suffering like the other big states and may avoid a sharp downturn altogether, Gov. Goodhair, elected most recently with 39% of the vote, is in deep trouble. Sen. KBH should win the R Primary and the office of Gov.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | May 12, 2009 7:33 AM | Report abuse

The only thing that a Crist candidacy signals is a another tax and spend politician is running to take more of our money for their pet rocks (projects). He'll be another facilitator for BHO's Alinsky-aligned, Chomsky-blessed, Marxist, Leninist, Maoist social welfare collectivism where individualism and initiative are being crushed by the current set of politicians.

Posted by: BeanerECMO | May 12, 2009 7:27 AM | Report abuse

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