Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Charlie Crist Delivers Florida For John McCain

John McCain got a BIG win in Florida tonight (and one that actually counts) and as he gives his victory speech, I'm struck by the only person in camera shot behind McCain: Florida Governor Charlie Crist.

Crist is extraordinarily popular in Florida and it looked as if he was going to stay neutral in the Republican race. But with Mitt Romney gaining a lot of steam in Florida, spending millions of his own money on television ads, and building a lead in most polls, Crist changed course, and on Saturday night, as Barack Obama was basking in the glory of his 28-point South Carolina victory, he endorsed McCain. Since then, he has traveled the state stumping for McCain, and the polls immediately turned around (the endorsement of Senator Mel Martinez helped too).

It's no accident McCain has Crist standing behind him tonight, as it was Crist who delivered Florida for McCain, and just may have won him the Republican nomination for President. So, it shouldn't be a surprise this summer when McCain announces Crist as his running mate. Southern Governor of perhaps the biggest swing state in the entire country, and one beloved by the Republican base which doesn't yet (and may never) fully trust McCain. It's a pick that makes sense and after tonight, after what Crist has been able to do for McCain, it's the least John McCain could do.

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