David Jolly tougher on Donald Trump than Charlie Crist
The weird Charlie Crist/David Jolly/Donald Trump dynamic persists even after the Democratic U.S. Rep. Crist unseated Republican Jolly in November. Jolly, an early and vocal crtitic of presidential candidate Trump whom Crist allies last year falsely portrayed as a Trump fan, appeared on MSNBC Monday night and gave a blistering critique of Trump's travel ban.
"If this is week one of the Trump Administration, it indicates that within the first year, we might find our President drifting toward an impeachable moment. At the very least, this is his J.V. moment," Jolly told Lawrence O'Donnell, after Trump's firing of acting attorney general.
Jolly is considering taking on Crist again in the overwhelmingly Democratic Pinellas County district. On MSNBC he called out both the left and right for failing to properly challenge Trump. Crist, he scoffed, posted a Facebook photo of him and his wife at the yacht club while many others were protesting Trump ban on travel from seven overwhelmingly Muslim countries.
"The President of the United States could destroy a member of Congress with a single tweet. And that`s why no member of Congress wants to speak out too much. I took to the house floor about 14 months ago when he called for a Muslim ban and as I mentioned, as a Born Again Christian, said I thought that disqualified Trump to be a candidate for the office. People are fearful to speak out.....Listen, on Sunday when the entire left, progressive America, was marching and protesting at the airports, (Crist) took a photo of he and his wife at a yacht club. And that was his social media post that day because he`s scared as well...
"It`s not surprising (Trump is) doing what he said he would do," Jolly continued. "It`s surprising Republicans are capitulating and following along. I`d rather do what I think is right and let the politics take care of itself. We need to see leadership in Congress right now on the right and the left."
Trump hosted several fundraising receptions for Crist when he was a Republican, but Democrats last year sent mailers with doctored photos falsely suggesting Jolly and Trump were friends.
Crist texted Trump a congratulatory note after the election. This week, he called Trump's travel ban order "shocking and deeply troubling" but was much more muted than Jolly.
That followed a campaign in which allies of Crist (for whom Trump had repeatedly helped raise money in the past) doctored photos to make it look like Jolly (a vocal, early critic of presidential candidate Trump)