Okay Charlie, Sell Us On Your Veto Power, Get The Base On Board and Don’t Screw This Up

Alright, the primary is finally over. Whether you like it or not, Governor Charlie Crist is now our nominee for the 2014 campaign. The time for infighting, bickering, and complaining is over and we must refocus all of our energy on denying Rick Scott a second term as Governor. Today’s “Unity Rallies” were a good start, however more work must be done obivously. There is one key number from election night that should motivate us to do better in November: over 100,000 more Republicans voted in the primary than Democrats which did not garner nearly as much coverage as ours. Thats a scary number and surely, should to push Democrats to rethink their electoral strategy going forward.

Charlie must focus all of his eneregy in our strongest of counties- Miami Dade, Palm Beach, and Broward if we are going to retake the Governor’s mansion from Rick Scott and the Republicans. The abysmal turnout in these three counties is a serious red flag going forward and must be addressed by the Crist campaign the rest of the way. Statewide the turnout figures were just about 17% however in our three strongest counties, turnout was far lower. Browards turnout was 10.76 percent, Palm Beach County recorded 12 percent turn out while Miami-Dade turnout was around 14.4 percent.  Whats worse is turnout was signifcantly higher in the smaller and medium sized counties which routinely are Republican strong holds. Bay, Citrus, Lee, Okaloosa and Brevard all registered turnout figures between 22 and 30 percent. Our previous campaigns for governor have taken our base for granted and its time we break the trend and actually start winning some of these races and we can’t do that without galvanizing our base.

Over the past few days, many progressives (mostly Nan Rich supporters) are already issuing threats that they will not show up for Charlie in November. In response, I’ve tweeted and opined that this type of electoral narcisssim is the reason why Democrat’s do not win statewide elections in Florida anymore. For far too long Republicans have succeeded in dividing our party and slowly but surely effecting our turnout numbers and solidifying their stranglehold over our state. This must stop now. If we cannot come together and realize that if we allow Rick Scott another term, many of our biggest issues- a woman’s right to choose, raising the minium wage, expanding medicaid, restoring funding to our fledging education system, and gun control amongst others, will become targets for the right wing extremist legislature and undoubtedly will be allowed to pass as Rick Scott’s veto pen will sit  in a drawer. Some of our party’s leading strategists are downplaying the GOPs performance two nights ago, arguing that their turnout was down this cycle as compared to the 2010 cycle- a flawed argument since the 2010 cycle  was a heavily contested primary. Do not be fooled Democrats, we have A LOT of work to do if we are going to win this thing and we can’t do it without our base. 

Charlie must focus on selling Floridians on his veto power over the next few months if we are to win this race. Whatever your opinions of Charlie, you must understand that the number one characteristic needed of our next Governor is that of a check on our extremist legislature. Charlie Crist can and will provide that. So Team Charlie if you are reading this, make sure you sell Floridians on the ever imporant veto power, connect with our base voters on this simple fact, and undoubtedly we will take back the Governor’s mansion and return the Sunshine State to the people. Do not screw this up, we are counting on you.

Thanks For Reading.


  1. Reality Bites · ·

    Just imagine the damage caused by 4 more years of a Rick Scott with no re-election concerns. Plus multiple Supreme Court appointments.


  2. Ok, I’ll take the first swing at this one. I’m as “left” as can be and I will happily cast my vote for CC. If we don’t do this then we are looking at Jeff Atwater or Adam Putnam in 2018 and we can kiss Florida goodbye for good. If you’re ok with that then by all means stay home on Election Day. Full disclosure, I voted for Nan in the primary, I met her a few times and found her to be a very nice person BUT she was a terrible candidate and I don’t think she would have done any better than Sink or Jim Davis for that matter. With CC as governor we will get at least some check on the GOP and it buys us time to rebuild our bench for the future. It would be foolish to blow this chance just to spite Charlie Crist.


  3. I agree, Arbee. Democrats are notorious for not showing up for mid-term elections. I’m an Independent who shows up electiontime but it seems Dems. are watching ‘Dancing with
    the Stars’ or some other crap on TV. The Dem.Party seems to favor only their strongest counties and be damned with the others. I also voted for Nan Rich but I knew she would be defeated. I fear Republicans are going to take the entire state as well as the Governor seat.
    This isn’t only in Florida but the entire nation. I think we ought to build an Ark!


    1. James, I agree with you too but I don’t think the Dems are watching crap. I think they just assume that no one could possibly vote for THOSE guys so there is nothing to worry about, someone else will cover for us. I’ve been in Fl since ’91 and the candidate for gov have been terrible. McKay, blah, McBride, nice guy but please, Davis, as inspiring as a brick, Sink, the biggest disappointment because I think she really could have special. Nothing but regression against gop’ers who I feel could have been beaten. For me, CC may stop the bleeding. I’m under no illusion someone as “left” as I am can win statewide, but I can live pretty well with the Bob Graham’s and Lawton Chiles of this world.


  4. Tom Bryson · ·

    Passing on some info defining in part the challenge we face.

    From DK Digest 8/29/14:

    • FL-Gov: A lot of people learned about Dixiecrats the hard way in 2000, during the Bush/Gore recount, when they noticed a bunch of small counties in the Panhandle with huge Dem registration advantages that went solidly for Bush, and leapt to the conclusion that the fix was in. It looks like some of those lessons have been forgotten, judging by the confusion over why ex-state Sen. Nan Rich, Charlie Crist’s liberal opponent from south Florida, performed the strongest in last week’s Democratic primary in those Dixiecrat-filled Panhandle counties.

    Miami Herald reporter Marc Caputo explains: these voters are so revolted by the party that they still belong to that they pretty much vote against Democratic frontrunners reflexively, even if it’s someone who’s even more liberal. It was the exact same pattern in 2010, where Alex Sink’s unfunded, no-name opponent (Brian Moore) similarly overperformed in those counties, despite the fact that Sink had more of a southern accent and more north Florida connections than Crist. If you’d like a visual representation, Matthew Isbell created some startling county-level maps of the phenomenon, tacked on to a pre-election post in which he predicted this very outcome. (David Jarman)




  5. Right on the mark Justin…..terrific column! I hope rank and file Democrats get the message. As Arbee said, Putnam and Atwater are waiting in the wings to follow if Scott gets a 2nd term…….a Crist win in 2014 and maybe again in 2018 could give Democrats time to build some much need bench strength!


    1. Tom Bryson · ·

      Crist can’t run in 2018. Part of the strangeness of this election. We are working with a non incumbent lame duck candidate.


      1. False. Charlie can in fact serve two terms. Governors can’t serve more than two CONSECUTIVE terms.

        Either fellow progressives realize importance of his veto or they play narcissist, stay home, and cost us another governor’s race.

        Their choice.


      2. From Ballotpedia: “The Governor of the State of Florida is an elected constitutional officer, the head of the executive branch, and the highest state office in Florida. The governor is elected by popular election every four years, and may serve a maximum of two terms in a row. There is no lifetime limit on the number of times he or she may be elected, but a governor who has been elected to two consecutive terms must be out of office for at least one election cycle before being eligible once again for re-election.”


      3. Tom Bryson · ·

        Thanks for the education.


  6. Kimberly · ·

    I’ll be writing in Nan Rich’s name. I will not vote for a right-winged, conservative Governor who just 4 short years ago stood for everything I hate and deplore. Charlie Crist is a liar and isn’t fit to represent our party.


    1. As one of Nan’s top supporters both financially and vocally I will be voting for Charlie. Why? Because Nan wants me to. My feelings about Nan’s superiority in every way and manner hasn’t changed.. My dislike and distrust of Charlie hasn’t changed. What has changed is the likelyhood of 4 more disastrous years of Rick Scott. I am imploring all of Nan’s fans to hold their nose and vote for Charlie. I will be and I can assure you so will Nan. Politics make strange bedfellows………..


  7. […] Broward County Democrat oddly performed well in last week’s primary. Justin believes that Crist must work urban counties and raise turnout in core Democratic areas. All indications seem to point to Crist following the Snyder playbook closer than the Burnett one. […]


  8. OrlandoChris · ·

    Adrian Wyllie is our best choice this election.


  9. Our St Lucie River and Indian River Lagoon are dying. This is sorry was the most diverse estuary in the United States. We need Charlie. Adrian Wyllie has no understand of the water and how it works. none. and he was at one of our rallys and apparently forgot to ask the experts we provided for the politicians to listen to. (Yes we had at rally invited them all so they could listen to us). Charlie came here, went out on the river and lagoon and really listened. We have created our “Clean water advocates” Charlie is on the top of list. Please enjoy our teaser from The RiverView :We are Charlie Crist fans https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAqeAk_c4w0


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