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He was 85.
In the “Who Else Saw This Coming” file, Charlie Crist registers as a Democrat.
Crist — Florida’s former Republican governor who relished the tough-on-crime nickname “Chain Gang Charlie” and used to describe himself variously as a “Ronald Reagan Republican” and a “Jeb Bush Republican” — on Friday evening signed papers changing his party from independent to Democrat.
He did so during a Christmas reception at the White House, where President Barack Obama greeted the news with a fist bump for the man who had a higher profile campaigning for Obama’s re-election this year than any Florida Democrat.
Frankly, his new nickname should be The Chameleon. Seems to me he changes with whatever is the “in thing” at the moment.
Charlie and Carole Crist had a tour of the White House on Thursday and ran into Valerie Jarrett, a senior adviser to the president. He mentioned that he was thinking of signing papers to become a Democrat the next night at a White House reception.
“She said, ‘You’re always welcome in my party. I think it’s a great idea,’ ” recounted Crist.
I would take that recounted statement with a grain of salt, but for the fact that Jarrett really thinks the Democratic Party belongs to her.
One thing’s for sure: tanning salons in Florida may suffer the tax, but Charlie more than makes up for that.