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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

BP means Bitter Politics, as GOP leaders and Gov. Crist battle over drilling ban and oil spill

18

July

Gov. Charlie Crist is returning to his populist roots, but the Legislature won't follow him down that road. In fact, many lawmakers would rather run Crist out of town.

Amid mounting bitterness between the independent governor and Republican legislators, a special session prompted by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill will open Tuesday. But rather than focusing on a referendum to ban offshore drilling in the state Constitution, as the governor wants, the gathering is likely to be a gripe session with most of the rhetoric aimed not at BP or the oil industry, but at Crist himself.

"I think it's completely unnecessary," said Rep. Matt Hudson, R-Naples, in a view expressed by others. "There's absolutely no reason we have to go and create a law for something that's already unlawful."

Crist may not say so publicly, but that's just fine with him. He wants to use Tallahassee politicians as a foil, and lawmakers appear to be playing into his hands. Crist, who quit the GOP and launched an independent run for the U.S. Senate, is eager to condemn legislative inaction as more proof that partisan politics is a dismal failure. (story here)

[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 11:13am]

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