Broward News

Rubio Trying to Energize GOP Base Against Crist

We've entered the home stretch in the race for U.S. Senate, and Marco Rubio is neck-and-neck with Charlie Crist. Which of these jockeys can whip his horse into a higher gear in the three months before the election? 

The momentum is clearly on Crist's side, as evidenced by this week's profile of him in the Wall Street Journal. But a recent mailer suggests that Rubio will try to use Crist's charge as a way to galvanize Republicans.

In a message that Rubio e-mailed to supporters this morning, he pointed to the Journal article as evidence of Crist's willingness to change his mind about key issues: 

Not only did Crist admit he's actively speaking with Harry Reid and left the door open to caucusing with Democrats if elected, he also flip-flopped on supporting Justice Sonia Sotomayor, admitting that he "probably" lied about what he truly believed in order to win Republican votes. Most importantly, Crist says he now supports the President's health care law. With more Americans opposing ObamaCare and a clear majority of Floridians calling for its repeal, Crist's latest attempt to say and do anything to win an election, or in this case gain some Democrat favor, has now put him out of the mainstream. 

 This kind of finger-in-the-wind politics is what's hurting America.

Of course, Rubio is right about Crist having malleable politics that can be adjusted based on what will get him the most votes; but don't hard-core Republicans already know that? And if they do, then they're already motivated to vote against him. The base can't get more energized than it already is.

This excerpt from the Journal article jumps out:

Mr. Crist believes he has stumbled on a political sweet spot, amid polls showing voters are angry at incumbents and disenchanted with both political parties.

Rubio's criticizing Crist for exactly the quality that endears him to Florida voters: They like that Crist is changes his mind -- so do Florida voters. Rubio may not want to admit it, but it's time for him to move left to pick off moderates who are leaning toward Crist.

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Thomas Francis