Crist Scrambles the Field

Gov. Charlie Crist's decision to run for Senate will create a free-for-all in Florida politics next year. State Attorney General Bill McCollum (pictured), CFO ...
by | May 12, 2009

McCollum Gov. Charlie Crist's decision to run for Senate will create a free-for-all in Florida politics next year. State Attorney General Bill McCollum (pictured), CFO Alex Sink and Agriculture Commissioner Charles Bronson all plan to run for governor, according to the St. Pete Times/Miami Herald.

The joint story predicts that Crist's sudden fundraising limitations -- federal candidates aren't allowed to raise soft money for their parties -- will hurt the GOP and lets a former Jeb Bush aide vent about frustration with the party's talent pool:

What's more, some Republicans are worried about their top contender for governor, McCollum. He has lost two of three statewide bids since 2000. Sink, considered the Democratic front-runner for governor if she runs, won her first and only statewide campaign in 2006.

"Bill McCollum is a great attorney general, but I think sometimes when individuals have run too many times statewide, you have to look at who's electable in a general election and then everybody needs to get behind that person in a primary," said Kathleen Shanahan, chief of staff to former Gov. Jeb Bush, who was encouraging Republican St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Baker to run for governor until Baker took his name out of the mix Monday.

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