The National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee got in hot water last year by making an early endorsement of Charlie Crist for the Florida senate seat up for a vote in 2010. Many folks, including myself, advised conservatives to contribute directly to candidates and avoid contributing to the party committee until they saw the light.
They saw the light:
GOP pressures Charlie Crist to halt U.S. Senate run
Some prominent Republicans in Washington and Florida are urging Gov. Charlie Crist to consider dropping his flagging bid for the U.S. Senate.
BY BETH REINHARD AND ADAM C. SMITH
April 20, 2010
With Gov. Charlie Crist facing a brutal Republican U.S. Senate primary or a full-blown party mutiny if he runs as an independent, prominent supporters are urging him to consider a third option: quitting altogether.
The toughest assessment came from the arm of the national Republican Party that had clamored to endorse Crist and shove aside rival Republican Marco Rubio nearly one year ago, when their positions in the polls were reversed.
``We believe there is zero chance Gov. Crist continues running in the Republican primary,'' said Rob Jesmer, executive director of the National Republican Senate Committee, in a memo. ``It is our view that if Gov. Crist believes he cannot win a primary, then the proper course of action is he drop out of the race and wait for another day.''
The memo added that Texas Sen. John Cornyn, NRSC chairman, would have delivered the advice personally -- if Crist had returned his phone call.
The governor confirmed his party's fears when he acknowledged for the first time Monday -- after weeks of denying it -- that he's considering an independent bid. Down roughly 20 points in the polls despite weeks of anti-Rubio television ads, Crist quietly yanked the spots in Orlando and Tampa Bay over the weekend.
``I'm getting all kinds of advice,'' Crist said in a telephone interview Monday, dismissing the pressure from national Republicans. ``I take my cues from people in Florida. That's what I care about.''
Crist added: ``I want to be very thoughtful in this. This is a decision that has to be made by [April] 30th, and I want to do what's right for the people of our state.''
If Crist were to run as an Independent, it's unlikely he would win, but such a candidacy would undermine Rubio's chances at winning the seat.
The National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee heard your voice. Isn't it time to say "thank you" and make a contribution to their ongoing efforts to win in 2010? Funding individual candidates is essential, but we also need to fund the organization with responsibility for coordinating the entire effort to win back the senate. Funding only candidates would be like supporting a football team by only buying shoes for certain players and never hiring a coach!