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The rise and fall of Charlie Crist

St. Petersburg's Charlie Crist became Florida's 44th governor at a time when the public seemed to be disdainful of excessive partisanship. He continued to govern from the center, even as the political winds shifted rightward.
[Steve Bousquet, Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau, PolitiFact Florida]
  • A seismic shift for Charlie Crist
    It was only 12 months ago that Gov. Charlie Crist was weighing a U.S. Senate campaign — and was seen as a shoo-in. Now facing a 20-point deficit in the polls to Marco Rubio, Crist has until Friday to decide whether to stay in the race as a Republican, run as an independent or not run at all.
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Gov. Charlie Crist

Charlie Crist, a Republican from St. Petersburg, was elected Florida's 44th governor in 2006. Rather than run for re-election in 2010, he decided to go for an open U.S. Senate seat, lauching his Charlie Crist for Senate campaign in May 2009. His chief rival is former House Speaker Marco Rubio, a Cuban-American from Miami, who launched Marco Rubio for Senate in 2009 also. As Florida governor, Charlie Crist has governed from the center, taking office on a populist wave. Marco Rubio, a staunch conservative, has been buoyed to frontrunner status in the U.S. Senate race in part by the enthusiasm of tea party supporters.

Charlie Crist: the rise and fall
Milestones in the Florida governor's term

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