Published reports this week that Florida’s former first lady Carole Crist has changed her voter registration to Democrat has fueled speculation that her husband, former Republican-turned-independent Gov. Charlie Crist, will make a comeback next year—as a Democratic candidate against 42-year Republican Rep. C.W. Bill Young in the Sunshine State’s 10th District.
No one has been able to confirm anything so far about the plans of Crist, who left the Republican Party while governor last year to run unsuccessfully for the Senate as an independent. The race was won by conservative GOPer Marco Rubio.
But reports of wife Carole’s party change has led to speculation Crist himself will do the same and take on Young, who turns 82 in December and is the most senior Republican in Congress.
“I saw Gov. Crist in West Palm Beach this month at the funeral of Claude Kirk [Florida’s first Republican governor since Reconstruction, who died at 85],” a longtime Palm Beach Gardens GOP activist who requested anonymity told HUMAN EVENTS. “He sure looked like he was running for something.”
Crist enraged fellow Republicans in ’09 by endorsing the President’s stimulus package and publicly embracing Obama during a Florida visit. Coupled with other nonconservative stands such as his championship of global warming control, Crist was the underdog in most polls against Rubio in the GOP Senate primary until he decided to go rogue and run as an independent
Since losing to Rubio, the former governor has joined a personal injury law firm in St. Petersburg and teaches law at Stetson University School of Law. Few who know the former state legislator, state attorney general and governor believe he can stay out of the political arena for long.