(The court ordered eight of the state’s 27 congressional districts redrawn, saying the configuration of each violated the 2010 Fair Districts constitutional amendment to stop gerrymandering.}
John Morgan thinks prospects look good for his longtime friend. Florida's best known personal injury attorney and Crist's employer and political benefactor told Politico on July 9, "The seat would be tailor-made for Charlie. I haven’t spoken to Charlie about this ruling, but I would say it’s far more likely than not he would run for the seat if the seat came to him. The math is there.”
True, 13 seems like a lucky number for a Democrat, unlucky for the Republican running in Jolly's place.
Now, he was told -- even by Morgan, his chief financial backer, even before Jolly ducked out -- that District 13 is "tailor-made" for him, it is that sure thing. When you've got a multimillionaire in your life and he's that supremely confident ...
Charlie will fight in a new District 13 now, despite rumors of Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, jumping into the race.
Charlie wants to go to Washington. He and Carole have wanted that for a very long time. Now Washington presents itself -- and a stepping stone at that. From the House, he can run for Bill Nelson's Senate seat if Nelson passes on a fourth term. Or, he can stay in the House as long as he wants and lackey his way up the ladder, depending on which party controls the lower chamber and who wins the White House. No more hustling clients for Carole's beach-town boutique.
But there's one thing Charlie shouldn't do.
He shouldn't underestimate the GOP.
He shouldn't expect the Republicans to sit on their hands as this redraft goes down. Mark my words, they're already plotting a strategy to snatch victory in 13. They have money -- a lot of it -- and they play to win. Just saying.
Chris Pack, regional press secretary of the National Republican Congressional Committee, may have set the tone for the battle ahead. He told Sunshine State News on Friday, "It's laughable that Charlie Crist still thinks he's a viable candidate for any office, including dog catcher. Maybe he'll run as a Green Party candidate this time since it's basically the only party he's yet to exploit."
Even without a single word from Charlie ... it begins.
Note: This column has been updated to reflect David Jolly's decision to pursue the U.S. Senate race.