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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Battle royale, at last: Crist vs. Scott



Charlie Crist won his first election as a Democrat on Tuesday night, soundly defeating former state Sen. Nan Rich to become Florida's Democratic nominee for governor.

"Congratulations! It's a wonderful night!" Crist said as he hugged his running mate, Annette Taddeo, after Rich called Crist to concede the race minutes after the polls closed.

Crist said the strong showing is a sign that Democrats believe in him despite the fact that he's new to the party.

"Frankly, I think I was on their side when I was in the other party," Crist said as he prepared for his victory speech. He said a friend once told him, " 'Charlie, you've been a Democrat your whole life, you just didn't know it.' Well now I know it."

Incumbent Rick Scott also cruised to victory, setting up the contest everyone expected: the current governor of Florida vs. the former governor of Florida.

Scott did not hold a public event Tuesday night, but released a statement that said, "The next few months are about talk versus action. That means Florida will have a choice between a governor who sent our state into a tailspin and a governor who gets results. Charlie Crist failed as governor, lost 830,000 jobs, and tried to run off to Washington — and now he wants his job back. We've come a long way in the last few years, but there's plenty of work left to do. Let's keep working."

Full story here.

[Last modified: Tuesday, August 26, 2014 8:47pm]


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