Make us your home page

The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Ready for the NFL, Charlie Crist?



"Welcome to the NFL," Charlie Crist used to say of Marco Rubio, when the insurgent Republican complained about Crist's attacks in 2010.

We're just days away from Crist announcing his campaign for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, and it's unclear whether Crist will be playing like he's in the NFL or the Pop Warner League.

Looks like blogger/consultant/man about town Peter Schorsch pulled the permit for Crist's first campaign rally/announcement. Now I'm a big fan of Schorsch's web site and more than once  have enjoyed a martini or three with Schorsch.

But Crist already has a history of lousy judgement in leaning heavily on dubious supporters (Scott Rothstein, Jim Greer, Alan Mendelsohn, Greg Eagle) who have a knack for winding up in prison. Count on that to be part of the campaign against him over the next 12 months.

Still, for his very first campaign event Crist turned to Scorsch who routinely and unapologetically lies publicly to the press, who owes nearly $68,000 in outstanding fines to the Florida Elections Commission, who six years pleaded no contest to grand thef and scheming to defraud charges. Really? Schorsch has rehabilitated his reputation considerably in recent years, and he is paid adviser to numberous political figures, including Republican state Sens. Jack Latvala and Jeff Brandes. But he remains a highly controversial figure and an odd choice for the Crist campaign to turn to right out of the box.

Crist today launched a Web site, What struck us first about it  is that it included no disclosure text saying who funded it, as is required for campaign sites. Crist is in gray area as an unannounced candidate, of course, but it seems the campaign felt a little uneasy about the disclosure rules too. The site has been amended to say: "Paid for Personally by Charlie Crist."

Ready for the NFL, Charlie?

[Last modified: Friday, October 25, 2013 8:10pm]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours