Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist to seek his old job
November 1st, 2013
07:06 PM ET
12 months ago

Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist to seek his old job

(CNN) - Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist is looking to return to the state's highest office, according to documents filed Friday with the Florida Department of State.

Crist, who served as a Republican governor from 2007 to 2011, has an event scheduled for Monday in St. Petersburg for a "Major Announcement" where he is expected to formally declare his candidacy.


The twist? Crist's professed party in the campaign filing Friday is Democrat.

Crist famously separated from the Republican Party during his failed 2010 bid for the U.S. Senate.

At the time, he switched to Independent after he fell far behind in the race against a then little-known Marco Rubio, who went on to become the state's Republican Senator after a three-way race.

The reason for Crist's fall from the GOP was in part his 2009 embrace of President Barack Obama at an event pushing the federal stimulus.

Crist completed his transformation from red to blue when he changed his party affiliation to Democrat in 2012 after backing Obama for reelection and speaking at the Democratic National Convention that year.

"I didn't leave the Republican Party, the Republican Party left me," Crist said on CNN's "Piers Morgan Tonight" at the time, repeating a line he used at the Democratic convention. "Issue after issue they seem to get more strident and more difficult."

Polls have treated the political transition kindly, with potential voters in a March Quinnipiac University survey backing Crist 50% of the time to Republican Gov. Rick Scott's 34%.


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soundoff (198 Responses)
  1. Johnny DC

    Whatever it takes to win, right Charlie? That's all that matters. Whatever gets you another big paycheck and more time in the limelight.

    Nothing new here. Your cowardly buddy Arlen tried the same move and failed epically, just as you will.

    The populace is slowly waking up to see the career politician for what he is. Redefining yourself like the two criminals in NYC will end just as bitterly as it did for them, in embarrassment and defeat.

    If you really did care about the Democrat agenda – which would be an amazing epiphany after decades of your so-called "Conservative leaning" – you would step aside and let a real Democrat take a swing at it.

    Pathetic.

    November 2, 2013 08:03 am at 8:03 am |
  2. Johnny DC

    Never trust a politician who is so concerned about his own political gain that he was willing to essentially hand the election to a Democrat (Meek) out of spite against his Republican primary opposition.

    Same story for Hillary in 2008. Willing to ruin Obama's chances over pure envy.

    Career politicians need to be stopped.

    November 2, 2013 08:05 am at 8:05 am |
  3. Rob

    I am so happy the tea party is weeding out these big government RINOs. It was about time smart people took power. These dems cant even run a website. What a bunch of loser idiots.

    November 2, 2013 08:09 am at 8:09 am |
  4. Rick McDaniel

    The guy who goes whichever way the wind blows............yeah, really who you want to lead.

    November 2, 2013 08:19 am at 8:19 am |
  5. Tom Legare

    Thankd God for Charlie who finally came to his senses and saw the light!! I don't know how any sane man can stay in the repub party??

    November 2, 2013 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  6. Dianne

    He's a good man and one of the few good politicians. I wish him all the best and i'll be voting for him.

    November 2, 2013 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  7. CoolCMo

    Not the best choice and certainly not my first choice, but compared to Rick Scott even Satan himself would be an improvement

    November 2, 2013 08:44 am at 8:44 am |
  8. dondiego

    "I didn't leave the Republican Party, the Republican Party left me," Best quote of the article.

    November 2, 2013 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  9. zaggs

    So the GOP left Crist huh? Ok, what about the independent movement? Di that leave him too?

    November 2, 2013 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  10. sailor

    Charlie is a good person. Give him a chance. He wants to do what is good for the people not for the party. For the general people. Listen to him a give him a chance.

    November 2, 2013 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  11. copperhead

    Charlie has discovered it is tough in the private sector, and wants to get on government dole again.

    November 2, 2013 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  12. Rinos-be-GONE

    Who would have thought that a demcroat was in the GOP. The Tea Party is cleanseing the GOP

    November 2, 2013 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  13. Polineutral

    At least Charlie Crist was a better govenor than Rick Scott. I'd certainly vote for him again, regardless of affiliation.

    November 2, 2013 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  14. theala

    Exactly, Mr. Crist. The Republican Party abandoned true fiscal conservatism in favor of fringe politics and a social agenda that the rest of the country could care less about. Ideology trumps everything and the pragmatism of Ronald Reagan is gone.

    I was done in 2008. We do need sound fiscal management, and the Democrats aren't always willing to provide it. But at least you can hold a divergent point of view and not be demonized for it.

    November 2, 2013 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  15. Tom

    He was never a republican, and he isn't a democrat now, he is first and foremost a "Cristian" for ever and ever, whatever is best for Charlie, that's his only dogma, and the saddest part is with Rick Scott (billionaire medicare fraudster with the charisma of a brick) running on the other side, Charlie will probably be elected. I'll have to leave my ballot blank, because I'd gag if I voted for either one of these.

    November 2, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  16. Patrish

    I voted for Charlie even when he was a Republican and he was a good governor. He was pretty much middle of the road Republican. I will definitely vote for him as a Democrat. We need to get rid of that lousy governor Scott that we have now. He has done nothing for this state. He was even against Amazon.com setting a distribution center here. I even find him creepy to look at. Please Charlie run!!! We need you, and you're better looking.

    November 2, 2013 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  17. Richard Right

    No he wasn't a Republican, just a very sneaky Dem in Republican clothing.

    November 2, 2013 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  18. Larry in Houston

    LOL... all I can say at this time is : Go Charlie Go !! I think that was the best thing he could do, is change his politics to Democrat.....I guess he knows that the "other" party will go by the wayside, since they went so far to the right, it's pitiful. Well, at least the Democrats hasn't been "Hi-jacked" by an extreme. (so far) (keep your fingers crossed) LOL

    To be perfectly honest, he's really a moderate, and is one of the few that at least some rational thinking. If I was a Florida Voter, I would Vote for him.

    November 2, 2013 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  19. Data Driven

    " potential voters in a March Quinnipiac University survey backing Crist 50% of the time to Republican Gov. Rick Scott's 34%"

    Early days, but Scott's in trouble. I see him losing to Crist by at least 10 points.

    November 2, 2013 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  20. Stephen

    Now you have a pictorial definition of RINO and hypocrite!

    November 2, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  21. Gig 'em

    He decided that he wanted to be a Republican. Then he changed his mind and decided that he wanted to be an Independent. Now he's changed his mind again and decided that he wants to be a Democrat. Sounds like my wife trying to decide on which pair of shoes to wear to a party.

    November 2, 2013 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  22. lisequinn

    I don't know that I would trust this "conversion". We have a fool up here in Washington, Rodney Tom who did something like this, got in as a democrat and promptly turn coated.
    Republicans cannot be trusted. They will do anything to subvert the government. If they can't win legally, they will hold the country hostage while they throw a hissy fit. They send our sons ans daughter to war, but cutting their benefits – not benefits, but that which they are rightly owed for serving this country, They threw our returning military personnel under the bus. They are cutting food stamps which some if not many soldiers returning nee, calling them lazy takers.
    nope republicans cannot be trusted.

    November 2, 2013 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  23. unretired05

    Couldn't stand the TEA.

    November 2, 2013 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  24. Tell it like it is

    "... after he fell far behind in the race... " He thinks things have changed, all is forgiven, and he'll be elected on his charm and good looks?

    "I didn't leave the Republican Party, the Republican Party left me," They certainly did, but not until you showed your true colors and became a turncoat. Good riddance to bad trash. Voters will surely agree.

    November 2, 2013 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  25. TransitDave

    He couldn't get elected to the Senate as a republican, and he's not gonna get re-elected governor as a Democrat.........In spite of all the lefty propaganda about Rick Scott, he's doing a pretty good job, and will beat CC like a drum........

    November 2, 2013 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
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