Karen Thurman Talks About Gubernatorial Race | New Times Broward-Palm Beach

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Karen Thurman Talks About Gubernatorial Race

The St. Pete Times political blog, The Buzz, just posted this interview with Florida Democratic Party Chair Karen Thurman:

At about the 90-second mark, Thurman responds to criticism that the party lacks a "bench" by touting Jack Seiler's victory in the Fort Lauderdale mayoral race. If a Democrat winning election in a Democratic city counts as a blockbuster, the state Dems are in trouble.

In advance of the 2010 election, in which Gov. Charlie Crist will be either gunning for reelection or for the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Mel Martinez, Thurman is defying the conventional wisdom that Crist is a popular leader.

After the jump, we'll handicap the 2010 governor's race, which will  be interesting onlyif Crist goes for Senate.

Now that Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink has passed on Florida's U.S. Senate race in 2010, she's the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for Florida governor in 2010, if she seeks it. And that decision will be influenced by whatever Crist decides. After the legislative session ends in May, Crist is expected to announce whether he's going to run for reelection as governor or enter the Senate race.

If he picks the Senate, which is probably where Crist is leaning, then suddenly there's a wide-open race for Florida governor. If Sink is the Democratic frontrunner (and there are indications the party is already coalescing around her), then there's parity on the Republican side. Who knows? Maybe the same Republicans waiting on the sidelines in the U.S. Senate race for Crist's decision will go for governor if Crist leaves that job open. So Vern Buchanan? Connie Mack IV? Former Speaker Marco Rubio? All of them look like favorable match-ups for Sink.