No Thanksgiving Break From Attacks in 2014 Florida Governor's Race

By: Kevin Derby | Posted: December 2, 2013 11:15 AM
Charlie Crist, Rick Scott, Nan Rich

Charlie Crist, Rick Scott, Nan Rich

Not taking a break for the Thanksgiving holiday, Democrats and Republicans continue to launch broadsides against each other as they battle for position in the Florida gubernatorial race.

The Republican Party of Florida (RPOF) took aim at former Gov. Charlie Crist on Monday, attacking its former standard bearer for supporting President Barack Obama’s federal health-care law. Crist had been a Republican for much of his political career but in 2010, after supporting Obama’s federal stimulus, he left the GOP to continue his bid for the U.S. Senate with no party affiliation. After backing Obama for a second term, Crist joined the Democrats at the end of last year.

Crist is now running for his new party’s nomination to challenge Gov. Rick Scott in November. On Monday, Lenny Curry, the chairman of the RPOF, ripped into Crist.

“Why should Floridians elect someone that is doubling down on his support of a disastrous federal overreach like Obamacare?" Curry demanded on Monday morning. “Why would Floridians double down on a gubernatorial candidate who abandoned his post once before? We can’t afford Obamacare, and Floridians can’t afford Charlie Crist.”

But Democrats are also ramping up the attacks against Scott. Allison Tant, the chairwoman of the Florida Democratic Party, turned up the heat on Scott, attacking the governor in an email sent out to supporters this weekend.

“Governor Scott isn’t leading our entire state -- no, he is leading for the benefit of his wealthy campaign contributors while ignoring Florida’s middle class families,” Tant insisted. “This is wrong – and is why we’ve got to go all in if we want to defeat him.”

The Florida Democrats are also running Web ads, highlighting Scott’s testimony in a Medicaid fraud case from his career in the private sector to insist the governor can’t be trusted. 

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Former state Sen. Dan Gelber also took aim at Scott in recent days. Sending out fundraising emails over the weekend, the Crist campaign included one under Gelber’s name.

“Rick Scott's special interest buddies gave him almost $6 million this month. They think they can buy his re-election,” Gelber wrote. “But they don't get to decide this election. You do. Charlie asked for a buck. I'm going to ask you to do a little more. As you recover from Thanksgiving, please give until it hurts ... and then give some more.”

Gelber’s signature included his title as former Democratic leader in the Florida House, trying to showcase the party’s support for Crist who was a Republican until 2010 and did not join the Democrats until December 2012. Gelber has been mentioned as a possible running mate for Crist.

Crist wasn’t the only Democratic candidate to go after Scott this past weekend. On Saturday, former state Senate Democratic Leader Nan Rich slammed the governor in an email to supporters.

“I have this recipe -- a special recipe -- to roast a real ‘turkey’ next year,” Rich wrote. “I am, of course, referring to Governor Rick Scott. While not a ‘turkey’ in the traditional sense – Scott’s coffers are already stuffed with millions of special-interest dollars and he has all the tea party trimmings you would expect in a ‘right wing-only’ bird.”

Crist currently leads Scott in general election polls and holds a commanding lead over Rich in Democratic primary polls.

Reach Kevin Derby at kderby@sunshinestatenews.com.

Comments (1)

7:01PM DEC 2ND 2013
i love that video, it says all you need to know.

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