A few months ago, this possibility seemed shocking, and nothing if not remote. But now it’s happened:
Florida Gov. Charlie Crist announced Tuesday morning he will run for U.S. Senate.
On his Twitter page, Crist wrote, “After thoughtful consideration with my wife Carole, I have decided to run for the U.S. Senate.”
Twitter – how cute. Quite unusually (but you can understand the motivation), John Cornyn and the NRSC instantly endorsed Crist. Conservative belle du jour Marco Rubio fired right back (also on Twitter! how savvy): “Disappointed GOP senate comm endorses Crist on day 1. Remember that reform must always come from the outside. Status quo won’t change itself.”
Rubio also released a new attack ad (not sure if it’s airing on TV, or if it’s just web fodder) linking Obama and Crist, with a photo showing them embracing. If Crist survives the primary, this tactic might wind up doing him a favor, assuming Obama is still popular in eighteen months from now. But the Republican contest ought to be a lot of fun no matter what.
In any event, with polling showing Crist far ahead in the GOP primary, the Swing State Project is changing its rating on FL-Sen from Tossup to Likely R – for now. It’s still early. We also anticipate changing our rating on the FL-Gov race soon, too.