[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/04/30/art.crist.0429.gi.jpg caption=" Florida Republican Gov. Charlie Crist wants independents to back his bid to become Florida's next senator. But he might not be exactly what they are looking for."](CNN) - Florida Republican Gov. Charlie Crist wants independents to back his bid to become Florida's next senator. But he might not be exactly what they are looking for.
"I should be a textbook supporter of Charlie Crist's independent candidacy because I'm a centrist and an independent," said John Avlon, an expert on independent voters. "But I'm not. ... Instead of having principle and disagreements with his party, he seems opportunistic."
On Thursday, Crist announced that he will run as an independent in the Florida Senate race against Republican Marco Rubio and Democrat Kendrick Meek - who now faces a primary challenger. On Friday, Florida real estate investor Jeff Greene jumped into the hunt for the Democratic nomination.
Avlon, author of "Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America" and "Independent Nation: How Centrists Can Change American Politics," said Crist's decision comes down to political calculus, something independents dislike.
"Charlie Crist has a much better chance of winning a general election than he does a close partisan primary - especially in a season of overheated rhetoric that is overcoming the Republican Party," Avlon said. "By no means [is this] a slam dunk for Charlie Crist. It's a bit more of a Hail Mary."