Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Another GOP Straw Poll, Another Defeat For Charlie Crist


Florida's Hernando County, a poor (median income- $32,572), very white rural area north of Tampa-- economically dominated by WalMart and limestone mining-- is the latest to deal Charlie Crist a stunning blow. Last week Marco Rubio won the local Republican Party's official straw poll-- by 46-0! Rubio, a right-wing extremist, is just kicking Crist's ass up Florida's Atlantic Coast, across the Panhandle (especially across the Panhandle) and down the state's economically hard-hit Gulf Coast. Despite polls that show Crist untouchably ahead for both the primary and the general election, Republican Party activists just have no faith in him, no interest in him-- and they just love the teabagging Rubio. This is especially true in the counties time left behind.
[Andy] Tuck is party chairman in rural, conservative Highlands County. In July, his party executive committee held a straw vote between Crist and his primary opponent, Marco Rubio.

Rubio won 75-1.

Republican activists everywhere in the state are rebelling against the conventional wisdom that Crist has it all sewn up. Many agree with Andy Tuck's assessment that the Republican primary may be tougher for Crist than appears on the surface. "He is not the conservative Republican he needs to be to win this race."

But the Tallahassee GOP Establishment collectively chuckles and scoffs at the grassroots nuts in the little rural counties like Hernando, Gilchrist, Pasco and Highlands. One Crist backer, state Senator Mike Fascano, sneered contemptuously at Rubio's victories. "I haven't been to a Republican executive committee meeting in years, and many other elected Republicans in Pasco haven't either," he said. "The silent majority doesn't go to party meetings or read blogs." He and other supporters of the governor point to their own polling data that shows Crist with a 67% approval rating among Republican voters statewide and chalk up Rubio's wins to a bunch of wild-eyed extremist meth freaks listening to too much Limbaugh and watching too much Glenn Beck.

But those extremist meth freaks are the base of the GOP in the 5th Congressional District-- which has more people on Social Security and welfare than any other district in the U.S.-- and the district's congresswoman, a bizarre extremist but not a meth freak herself, Ginny Brown-Waite, has actually endorsed Rubio against Crist, as did Congressman Jeff Miller, the furthest right of the Florida congressional delegation, Mike Huckabee, Jeb Bush Jr., purportedly out of prison now, and the most far right member of the U.S. Senate, SC secessionist Jim DeMint.

Brown-Waite, who isn't on drugs, explained why she decided to endorse Rubio even while the 3 far right Cuban-American congressmembers from Miami-Dade signed on to the Crist team:
Originally, I had not planned to endorse in this race, but as the challenges facing our nation and Florida grow more severe, times demand someone willing to make hard choices. Washington needs leaders with solid conservative beliefs and the courage to do the right thing. Marco Rubio does not try to be all things to all people. Like me, what you see is what you get. Marco Rubio is the consistent, principled conservative we need to provide a check and balance on the Obama-Reid agenda.

More bad news coming Crist's way:
• Pinellas County Republicans will hold a straw poll, likely in December. Coming in Crist's home county, it will have huge symbolic significance.

• In Volusia County, the party executive committee voted last month to censure Crist for choosing Democrats for appointive offices and also for supporting the president's stimulus program.

• A censure move in Palm Beach County failed in a tie; party leaders staved it off by promising a straw vote in October.

• In Broward County, party leaders held off a straw vote by promising personal appearances by Crist and Rubio.

Broward Chairman Chip Lamarca said he thinks Crist would win a straw vote in his county, but Palm Beach Chairman Sid Dinerstein expects Rubio to win his easily.

Rubio has been forcing Crist to move further and further away from the mainstream and into wacky Republican territory. Don't expect to see Crist screaming "Liar, you were born in Indonesia" at Obama in public anytime soon, but he has reversed himself on climate change and offshore drilling, smart moves in a GOP primary but not good for a general election where Democrats, independents and moderates will decide who the next U.S. senator will be. The Democrats, who have an extremely weak candidate in Kendrick Meek, know the only way they can win the seat is if Rubio is the Republican nominee.

UPDATE: While Florida Republicans Devour Each Other Politically...

The state spirals down economically. In the still out-of-control foreclosure debacle, 6 out of the nation's 10 hardest-hit congressional districts are in Florida, including FL-05, where Rubio is picking up so much support (including batty Congressmember Ginny Brown-Waite). Worst hit in the whole country, though, is FL-14 (Ft. Myers), the district represented by Connie Mack. And on the health insurance front, the number of uninsured Floridians has jumped from 2.8 million to 3.6 million while one Bush was in DC and another was in Tallahassee. The portion of workers in Florida without insurance has increased from 20.9% in 2001 to 24.5% in 2008. Today Vice President Biden met with state Insurance commissioners and spoke about the burden of health insurance premium increases on Florida families. Only Texas has a worse rate of uninsured than Florida, and Mario Diaz-Balart's and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen's districts are worse than anything in Teaxs-- with about a third of their constituents under 65 having no health coverage whatsoever.
Health insurance premiums for American families continue to skyrocket. In the past year, the national average annual family premium for employer-sponsored health insurance rose to $13,375 in 2009-- a shocking 5.5 percent increase during a recession when inflation actually fell by 0.7 percent.
"The status quo of rising premiums is simply unsustainable," said Vice President Biden, "for families, for businesses, for state budgets, and for our national economy."
In every state, premiums have increased far faster than wages and are consuming increased portions of family budgets. The White House's analysis found that families’ premiums in Florida went up 121 percent, outpacing wage growth of just 43 percent.

Neither Crist nor Rubio has anything constructive to say to address the health care crisis in Florida. But of course each is putting all his energy into destroying the other politically.

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At 10:27 AM, Anonymous WCBanta said...

What these statistics seem to say is that the Florida, like the nation, is polarized between right and left, urban and rural, white and non-white. The right will not listen to Obama and the left will not yield to the right. The majority rules, the majority is liberal, and the cons hate everything when they're losing. Grow up, GOP, stop whining and start campaigning for the next election!

At 11:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think its also a sign that money is losing its ability to persuade in elections. The amount of votes up for grabs is not important anymore. Only turning out your people is. Rubio can win if he has enough money to turn out his people against Christ, but he doesn't need to match Christ. He just needs to be able to turn out more of his people than Christ can, and it looks like Rubio has more people that he can draw from.

At 6:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rubio is hardly a right-wing extremist. He's a traditional conservative and believes in conservative values.

Crist on the other hand supported Obama's stimulist packaage and buys into the man made global warming hoax. If elected, we can't trust that he wouldn't just be replacing PA's Arlen Specter, eventually switching to Democrat because he can't trust the Republicans to reelect him in a primary.

Hopefully, Florida Republicans won't allow Crist to get past the primary, but chances are, they'll vote for him because he can, and will beat any Democrat put up against him. Rubio may not win the general election, but I wouldn't have to take a scalding hot shower after voting for him to wash off the shame.

At 9:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding the pro-Rubio commenter: it really doesn't help your guy if your last graf contains the phrase "may not win in the general election."

At 12:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Whacky Republicans"? "Extremists"? What are you, a SNL parrot or do you actually have ANYthing FACTUAL to go with your whining Driberal rants?

You want to know just who the "whacky" party is? Try Googling: "The 45 Stated Communist Goals to Take Over America". Read the list and then ask yourself which party it represents.

Google: "The Sworn Affidavit of Bishop Ron McRae" and read it all to find out just WHO and WHAT the illegal Kenyan Muslim Marxist Racist Chimposter is in OUR White House.

Instead of SNL drool, why don't you provide us with an "extremist", America hating group on the right that even comes close to the corrupt, taxpayer extortion racket called ACORN.

At 12:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've met Marco Rubio and actually had a "down to earth" conversation with him! Ever tried doing that with a Democrat politician. They're the most condescending, arrogant, a-holes in existence.

Marco Rubio is sincere, traditional family man (4 children) and is the real deal and espouses. His parents escaped Communist Cuba and he has first hand knowledge of the horrors of Communism, something most Americans are clueless about. Why do you think they voted one in last year? It's been removed from the government (ie: Commie) run schools for years, along with prayer and replaced with politically correct, social engineering, touchy feely nonsense, ALL designed to dumb down America's youth to pave the way for the Communist takeover. GOOGLE: "The 45 Stated Communist Goals" and read the list. It's right out of the "democrat" party playbook and is in it's final stages under the current squatters in the White House and Congress.


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