First, Charlie Crist squandered a safe GOP Governor’s mansion in order to advance his vain and futile Presidential ambitions. Then, he squandered a lead of over 30 points in the polls to Marco Rubio, who was almost a total unknown, despite being flush with enough cash from out-of-state donors to completely flood the airwaves. Then, his personal firewall, state GOP chair Jim Greer, was taken down in flames by party activists angry (in part) over his support for Crist. Now, the polls consistently show him facing double-digit deficits and an opponent who is dominating the conservative vote in a Republican primary.
If you’ve ever watched a campaign quickly catch fire and implode before, you know the next two steps before even reading them. First, ridiculously overconfident bragadoccio. Cue Charlie Crist:
Next? Campaign staff fleeing the sinking ship, of course:
In the latest sign of turbulence for Charlie Crist’s wounded U.S. Senate bid, key staffers are starting to leave the campaign.
Political director Pablo Diaz, one of the first two staff members hired for the Senate campaign, is departing at the end of the month for “a new opportunity.” Sean Doughtie, a well-regarded new media consultant who had worked with Crist for years, stopped working for the campaign at the end of January.
“The campaign was going in a different direction,” said Doughtie.
The writing is on the wall in the GOP primary: Crist is toast. If Crist actually stays in the primary until after the vote, he knows he can’t run third party under Florida law. The only remaining question at this point is how soon he drops out and whether he decides to show that true moderate cooperative spirit and run third party in order to sabotage the GOP candidate.