30 April 2010

The Florida Senate race

Florida's Governor Charlie Crist is, by Republican standards, a moderate, having supported abortion rights and Obama's econo-mic stimulus package and favored environmental protections (he opposed offshore oil drilling, for example, a position which has probably grown more popular over the last few days). He is also widely suspected to be gay. None of this sits well with the hard-line right; and when Crist decided to run for the Senate this year, much of the right backed the more conservative Marco Rubio for the Republican nomination. With Rubio polling far ahead of Crist among Republican primary voters, Crist has now dropped out and plans to run for the Senate seat as an independent.

The stage seems set for another NY-23-style debacle. Florida is the purplest of states, often splitting its vote almost exactly 50-50 (most notoriously in the 2000 Presidential election), not very hospitable turf for too-red or too-blue candidates. As a centrist, Crist would likely have won; he still has a good chance of winning as an independent. If he does, his bridges with the Republican party will have been well-burned. Even if he doesn't, he could split the Republican vote and help the Democrat, Kendrick Meek, to win. Either way the Republicans are now at real risk of failing to capture a Senate seat which, by sticking with Crist, they would likely have gained.


Blogger Tim said...

Hmmm I wonder if the tea baggers have a strategy or as in Upstate NY,they just wanted to flex their muscle.Not caring if they won or lost but just trying to make a point.
Also if Charlie were to win, would he then caucus with the Dems. Kind of a little Joe Lieberman.

30 April, 2010 02:17  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

I see no strategy here other than "push the most right-wing candidate available and damn the consequences".

It's hard to say right now what Crist will do if he wins. By then the Republicans will have had plenty of opportunities to antagonize him.

30 April, 2010 03:03  
Blogger TomCat said...

Crist is an improvement over Rubio.

30 April, 2010 12:29  
Blogger Green Eagle said...

No one wants to comment on the obvious: This ostracism of Charlie Crist has more to do with his long known sexual orientation than anything else. The teabaggers have deluded themselves into thinking they are in control of the country, and their true colors are coming out.

30 April, 2010 12:52  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Wouldn't be surprising.....

30 April, 2010 14:40  

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