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Charlie Crist Bear-Hugs Obama Closer As He Excoriates GOP’s Rightward Slouch

| August 26, 2012

charlie crist barack obama

Remember me? (CharlesCk)

From the “man hug” to full embrace, former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist on Sunday urged voters to support President Barack Obama in the crucial swing state where the Democratic incumbent and Republican candidate Mitt Romney remain in a razor thin race.

In an op/ed piece in the Tampa Bay Times, Crist further distanced himself from the party he stepped away from two years ago, saying Republicans have moved too far to the right and have alienated middle class Americans, women and minorities.

“I’m confident that President Barack Obama is the right leader for our state and the nation,” Crist wrote. “I applaud and share his vision of a future built by a strong and confident middle class in an economy that gives us the opportunity to reap prosperity through hard work and personal responsibility. It is a vision of the future proven right by our history.”

The GOP response to Crist’s announcement was swift and predictable, with Republican Party of Florida Chairman Lenny Curry branding Crist as a turn coat and opportunist who was only concerned about his own political future.

He also blasted Crist’s timing, which came hours after Republican officials announced they were calling off Monday’s activities at the Republican National Convention because Tropical Storm Isaac was churning its way toward the state.

“Despite the threat Florida is facing from a severe storm, Charlie Crist has demonstrated, yet again, that his political ambition will always come before the needs of Floridians,” Curry said in a statement released Sunday morning.

“As the mainstream media rush to portray this as a victory for Democrats, please join me in reminding reporters and the people of Florida exactly what you and I already know; this is political opportunism, plain and simple,” Curry said.

Sunday’s endorsement marks Crist’s latest political shift after he lost the U.S. Senate race to former House Speaker Marco Rubio in 2010. Crist left the GOP and ran as an independent for that seat.

Crist earlier had joined other moderate Republicans, including former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, in calling for the party to move closer to the center. The move toward the middle, which at one time seemed politically advantageous, turned sour during the tea party inspired political uprising in 2010.

Crist, a former Republican state senator, attorney general, and education commissioner found himself out of public office after the 2010 elections. Lately, rumors have abounded that he might register as a Democrat and run for governor in 2014.

Many attributed Crist’s loss to Rubio to his call for moderation and cooperation, a sentiment solidified in February 2009 when Obama and Crist hugged each other at a Fort Myers event. A Politico headline said of the moment: “When a Hug Becomes the Kiss of Death.”

–Michael Peltier, News Service of Florida

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31 Responses for “Charlie Crist Bear-Hugs Obama Closer As He Excoriates GOP’s Rightward Slouch”

  1. Prescient33 says:

    “Rightward slouch?” Leave it to your headline writer to denigrate the Grand Old Party while trying to paint a true Quisling as some sort of a hero. If Obama seeks the endorsement of the likes of “Good Time Charlie” Crist, he is flailing desperately indeed.

  2. Clint says:

    Could not stand Charlie Crist then. And I can’t stand him now. I’m going to the theater to see 2016: Obama’s America. Then I’m coming home and signing up for the Florida Militia.

  3. sam8131 says:

    Yup, the economy is great, jobs are abundant and women have never had so many freebys. Black unemployment is exceptionally good right now. The debt is well under control too. We are doing just dandy under Obama’s leadership. When Obama gets the rich to pay their fair share we will be able to have a surplus in our budget.

  4. question says:

    Gov. Charlie Crist, what Republicans looked like before the Neanderthals took over.

    • Magnolia says:

      Charlie Crist is a crook. His chief of staff is going to be arraigned soon. Wonder if he will squeal when that happens?

  5. Ben Blakely says:

    Crist always was a under the covers liberal democrat looking to enlarge government, reduce citizens freedoms, increase govenment spending by borrowing greater amounts of money to raise debt load and above all, tax and spend, tax and spend ad nauseum.

    No wonder he embraces the collectivist marxist Barry obama so closely. Remember, before the government can spend a dime, it must first TAKE it from someone or borrow money it does not have.

    That means the governemt takes it from YOU and spends it without oversight and with great waste. Look at the facts, government spending is OUT OF CONTROL under Barry obama. obama is only interested in DESTROYING capitalism, DESTRYOYING what the republic that the founding fathers created. obma is all about turning America into a marxist socialist democracy just like France and Greece. Just look at those bankrupt leftist countries and see how they are collapsing and going bankrupt.

    Obama is pure poison and a cancerous tumor to the U.S. He is toxic to the U.S. and he is NO friend of yours!

  6. Magnolia says:

    Charlie Crist would sell his soul to the devil if it would win him an election.

  7. Kendall Clark-StJacques says:

    I always knew Charlie was a smart man. Glad he abandoned the GOP when they went ring wing radical.

  8. Ronald Duffy says:

    I always applaude those that knew they made a mistake and corrected the mistake and accepting Responsibilities for thier actions Toche` Charlie Crist

  9. Ben Dover says:

    He`s right about who we need to be voting for in this election , but I`m still pissed at him for one of his last moves as the Gov of this state , the A-hole went and legalized these damn red light camera`s right before he left office, then he ran off to chase ambulances

  10. Johnny Taxpayer says:

    I’m not sure Obama wants Charlie Suntan’s endorsement. He represents what the vast majority of the population despises, regardless of party or political ideology. He’s the true flip flopper who will do whatever it takes to win an election.

  11. Lonewolf says:

    Crist instead of the crook we have now….

  12. question says:

    hummm…. looks like I owe Neanderthals an apology… they were MUCH more evolved than some right wing extremists.

  13. Dorothea says:


    Seems like you support the biggest liar and flip-flopper of them all, Mitt Romney. Charlie Crist doesn’t even come close.

    From the Huffington Post:

    The question is whether someone who is willing to resort to such calculated lies, and build a campaign machine around them, can be worthy of the public’s trust with the most powerful office in the world.

    • "My Daily Rant" says:

      Anybody that reads the Huffington Post is a Crazy Leaning Liberal.
      Kendall; Crist didnt leave the Repulb.Party he was voted out.
      And to you Crazy Liberals you are as bad as the crazy rights.
      The way I believe Gov. should work is like this,You have your Crazy Left,You have your Crazy Right but the President should take from both and try to stay in the middle of the road.What we have is a Crazy Left what he calls Progressive.The only thing Progressive about Obama is the way he spends OUR money.We cant handle another 4 years of him.

      Crist is a loser,was a Repub. switched to Independent only because Repubs. didnt want him.He can hug Obama all he wants their both losers.I say this because obama has had 4 years and spent $5 Trillion, controled Washington completely his fist 2 years and did NOTHING.He robs $700 Billion from Medicare to give his inner city voteing block free Insurance,The elderly that put that money there will now suffer so others who wont work can get it for free.We really cant take another 4 years of Obama.

      • Dorothea says:

        @Daily Rant

        The author of the article in the Huffington Post is Robert Reich, not one bit crazy left. The following is a brief biography;

        ROBERT B. REICH, Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley, was Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration. Time Magazine named him one of the ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the last century. He has written thirteen books, including the best sellers “Aftershock” and “The Work of Nations.” His latest is an e-book, “Beyond Outrage.” He is also a founding editor of the American Prospect magazine and chairman of Common Cause.

        As for the rest of your rant, that’s exactly what it is. The crazy right wing has gained control of the Republican Party. The crazy left has not gained control of the Democratic Party. Big difference. I would appreciate your at least TRYING to substantiate your information, because you sure have it all wrong. Obama did not rob $700 billion from Medicare to benefit inner city folks. He did not control Congress for his first two years (the Senate requires 60 votes to get anything done, not a simple majority.) The elderly will not lose one dime of coverage or suffer, in fact, they have received additional benefits that they did not have before. If you can substantiate any of your rant, at least provide us with some documentation besides your own misguided notions.

        • Magnolia says:

          Dorothea, Reich is about as liberal as it gets. He is to the left of Obama.

          • Dorothea says:


            There’s a big difference between the political thinking of the crazy left and and the political thinking of liberals. Being left of Obama is not all that difficult, since Obama is centrist left. It would appear that you think of your political leanings as mainstream. Based on your comments, I regard them as crazy right and far to the right of even Ronald Reagan. But that’s my opinion.

      • Riley says:

        Four more years of Obama, then eight for Hilliary. All the republican’t will truly be insane by then.

        Howard, Aren’t we all just so lucky that we got the unethical crook Rick Scott as governor. Celebrate, celebrate, dance to the music.

        Clint, I would not waste my money on the movie, but thanks for helping the economy.

        Ben, It would be my guess that you will be the first republican to refuse social programs such as social security and medicare. Heck, you might even contribute to the government to pay off the national debt created by Ronald Reagan and the Bushes.

    • Magnolia says:

      Why didn’t I look at the Huffington Post first????? Silly me!

      I’d say your last paragraph covers my views of the Huffington Post.

      ANYBODY BUT Obama.

  14. Hury Looey says:

    here is the stuuf Obama serves up….watch the video by Nancy Pelosi’s daughter.’

  15. JL says:

    Well, I do not care for the likes of Nancy Pelosi, and hate to think I have to vote for someone in the same party she belongs. But I cannot, with good faith, vote for Mitt. He is a phoney, a lier, and most of all, a Republican. I was a Republican my entire life, but unfortunately, the party has gone so far right, they’re out of touch with the American public. They believe in “Liberty and Justice for All” all right, but only for rich, white, straight men. There are bits and pieces of the party I still back. But they’re getting fewer and fewer.
    I’m becoming disillusioned with both parties. I think I will re-register as an Independent after this election. I’m disgusted at how neither side accomplished much of anything over the last 4 years because all they do is argue. They act like children. And I agree with the other comments about our former Gov. He would do anything for a vote. I don’t care what party he flip flops to, I won’t ever vote for him.

  16. Outsider says:

    Charlie Crist: I never liked him. He is a man just as confused about his politics as his personal preferences.

  17. Dorothea says:

    @Hury Looey

    Did you actually watch the video? For those that don’t bother to click on the links, you needn’t bother this time. The link had little or nothing to do with Alexandra Pelosi’s documentary, just a rerun of a Fox News rant, foreshadowed by an absurd ad by the absurdly rightwing Republican Party.

  18. Binkey says:

    I would vote for Charlie Crist

  19. Howard Duley says:

    Charlie Crist is exactly what is wrong with government. He lost fair and square in the senatorial election then ran as an independent and still lost. He is bitter because he felt entitled because he was the governor. Now he jumps to the democrats just to pxxs in peoples faces. The more I see of politicians the more I’m in favor of a dictatorship.

  20. He knows the GOP is done in 10 yrs, if he wants to have a political future he has to be in a PARTY that is diverse !

  21. question says:

    Think I’ll vote for the 1st candidate that mandates, for all time in the future, all parties:

    Campaign & Election: No longer than 3 months

    Fact Checked Campaign Lies: If not removed immediately – name withdrawn from consideration

    Maximum Campaign Expenditures [with $ from anywhere, anyone, any company] – $1,000,000 –
    Maximum contribution $50

    Stop campaign insanity & waste Party!

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