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Pundit pops cold quip about love and guv

Gov. Charlie Crist said in July, “I knew she was the one,” of fiancee Carole Rome amid talk he might be a running mate.

SCOTT KEELER | Times

Gov. Charlie Crist said in July, “I knew she was the one,” of fiancee Carole Rome amid talk he might be a running mate.

Even before John McCain made his choice of Alaska's governor as his vice presidential choice on Friday, at least one member of the media was predicting Gov. Charlie Crist would cancel his nuptials to Carole Rome if he wasn't on the ticket.

"After Friday, the engagement might be off if he's not the running mate, right?" MSNBC political analyst Chuck Todd quipped Wednesday on Morning Joe the show hosted by former U.S. Rep. Joe Scarborough, R-Pensacola. Todd suggested Crist got engaged to make himself a more attractive running mate.

As three other colleagues nervously chuckled, foreign affairs correspondent Andrea Mitchell told Todd: "You're so cold. That was so mean."

Todd shot back: "It was a question."

"That was a helluva question," Scarborough said.

Low turnout, high cost

What price a vote? $94.52 if you're Max Linn. That's the math in the multimillionaire'slosing bid for the U.S. House District 10 Democratic nomination. The candidate loaned his campaign $450,000 and donated $62,689, according to a Federal Election Commission report. But he collected just 5,424 votes. The winning candidate in Tuesday's three-way race, Dunedin Mayor Bob Hackworth, loaned $60,000 to his campaign and donated $2,300 — for a combined price-per-vote of $5.98 for 10,420 votes. Samm Simpson, the second-place finisher, was out just the $400 she spent to open her campaign account — or 6 cents for each of the 6,445 votes she got.

Full seat, half-vote

Only half of Florida's 114 delegates will get a vote at the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minn. But they'll all get a seat on the floor.

State party chairman Jim Greer declared the deal a victory, saying McCain's unchallenged nomination makes the roll call vote a nonissue.

"There was a lot of push-back from RNC people, but Sen. McCain was very supportive of my position," Greer said Friday after spending three days resolving the issue.

Half of the delegates will vote. The others will be treated as "honored guests" with full privileges, Greer said. Except voting, of course.

Hooked to a star

Nothing like being in the right place at the right time. Ana Cruz, a Tampa Democratic consultant, was hanging around the VIP section of the Pepsi Center on Wednesday night at the Democratic National Convention when Jamie Foxx came by. "He didn't have credentials," she said, "and I could tell he needed help."

So began Cruz's job as his personal assistant. "He said, 'Here's my cell. Don't leave me.' " Next thing she knows, they are in Bill Clinton's suite, watching Joe Biden's speech. Then they hopped in Foxx's limo along with Ashley Judd and went to see Kanye West at the Exdo Center. Foxx got on stage and performed Gold Digger. Cruz then rode the limo back to her hotel. It was waiting in the morning, and Cruz spent Thursday arranging interviews for her new friends.

Convention talk on 'Political Connections'

Political Connections looks back at the Democratic convention and ahead to the GOP gathering at 11 a.m. today on Bay News 9.

Time for House and home but not Senate

There's one name you can scratch from the list of potential contenders for the U.S. Senate in 2010: Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the rising congressional star from Weston.

"I'm not running for Senate. I have three small kids, and when I came (home I) wouldn't be able to be with my kids. I would have to be somewhere else in Florida ," she said last week.

Stephanie Garry, Alex Leary and Adam C. Smith contributed to this report.

Winner of the week

One opponent, Max Linn, was a millionaire self-financing his campaign; the other, Samm Simpson, was a repeat candidate with a grass roots following. But Dunedin Mayor Bob Hackworth surprised everyone in the Democratic primary for U.S. House District 10 by taking 47 percent of the vote on Tuesday. Even if he loses to U.S. Rep. C.W. Bill Young in November, he's upped his name ID.

Loser of the week

Visions of moving into the U.S. Naval Observatory in Washington are over for now for Gov. Charlie Crist. The only question: Will Sen. John McCain still be invited to the wedding? How about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin?

Pundit pops cold quip about love and guv 08/30/08 [Last modified: Sunday, August 31, 2008 6:38pm]

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