A lot of people disliked the fact that Kendrick Meek was the Democratic candidate who Democratic Party insiders rallied around early on, forcing out or scaring off other potential candidates. The theory was that these other candidates would’ve done better than Meek Tuesday. I’m calling bullshit again.
Who would’ve done better? There were lots of suggestions:
-Dan Gelber: I love Dan and he certainly would’ve been the best person in Florida to do the job of U.S. Senator, but he dropped out of the race because he wasn’t raising the same kind of money Meek was. After that, he lost a statewide race to Pam Bondi, one of the worst Republican statewide candidates I’ve ever seen.
-Pam Iorio: She may be popular in her area, but even fewer people outside her area knew her than people outside Meek’s area knew him. If one of Meek’s weaknesses was name recognition, Iorio would’ve had a bigger problem there. I truthfully had never heard of her until people started talking about her for senate.
-Jeff Greene: Take the worst qualities of Kendrick Meek and couple them with the worst qualities of Rick Scott and that’s Jeff Greene. He would’ve had more money and he would’ve wasted it all.
-Anybody else: Meek, Gelber, Iorio and Greene would’ve done better than any other candidate who could’ve possibly run as a Democrat with two exceptions…
1. Alex Sink: If Sink had chosen to run for Senate, she might’ve done better than Meek. Then again, she might not have, since some of the same reasons Meek never caught fire would’ve applied to her as well. I doubt she would’ve ever done it anyway, running for Senate is about ideas and ideology, running for governor is about governing and technical job duties. Sink is more appropriate for the latter.
2. Charlie Crist: If Crist had switched parties long before the primary and run as a Democrat, there’s a legitimate chance he could’ve won the primary and the general. People outside of the right of the Republican Party aren’t really excited about Marco Rubio, so Crist might’ve won in a two-way race as a Democrat.
I’m not suggesting that it would’ve been a good thing for Crist to become a Democrat. It certainly would’ve been bad for Democrats and bad for the U.S. Senate, I’m just saying that Crist as a Democrat appears to be the only realistic path to defeating Marco Rubio. Sure, if Meek had dropped out earlier in the process, Crist could’ve won as an NPA, but it would’be been unfair and undemocratic to ask Meek to do that and there’s no way he would’ve ever done that.
I don’t think it’s out of the realm of possibility that Crist might still try to become a Democrat. I’m not a fan of it.
*Send your tips, ideas, feedback and links to firstname.lastname@example.org
*Interested in writing for FPC? E-mail me at email@example.com