Charlie Crist is a former Republican governor of Florida. As it turns out, he is the only governor I have ever personally met, not just by a handshake in some reception line, but by a meeting in the governor’s office with him and the lieutenant governor, lasting about 15 minutes back, in 2007, shortly after he had been elected. I was there with a lobbyist and a few other executives. I liked the guy then, and I like him now.
Crist didn’t run for re-election for governor in 2010, and instead ran for the U.S. Senate. He lost against Marco Rubio, the tea-party candidate. After that, he became an Independent.
Now Crist is a Democrat, and running against Gov. Scott he is showing a lead of about four points.
Regarding his view on climate change, according to SaintPetersBlog:
“I’m not a scientist either but I can use my brain and I can talk to one,” said Crist, arriving for a 25-minute presentation by Professor Jeff Chanton of the Florida State University Earth and Atmospheric Science Department.
Too many Republican politicians who wield enormous power, both by their office and their stature and therefore access to the media, keep claiming they are not scientists.
Sen. Rubio and Gov. Scott, you have been elected by your constituents to do the right thing for your local area and your country. As a Florida politician, you should be keenly interested in climate change, anthropogenic or not, and study it with fury and dedication. The water will reach your children’s knees sooner or later, no matter whether your ideological direction today was aligned with reality or not. Go to your universities and talk to your scientists. It’s your job to educate yourselves. It’s your job to do the right thing for your country. It is not your job to look over your shoulders and dodge tough decisions so you can get elected again.
Real leadership will show when you make the tough calls. Real leaders get re-elected. They don’t have to play word games.
Then there is House Speaker John Boehner from Ohio who similarly said earlier this year that he was “not qualified to debate the science over climate change.” Boehner also spoke in Ohio on June 26, 2013, stating that 95% of Ohio’s electricity depended on burning coal. I am sure Ohio coal workers were happy to read that their Speaker of the House was standing up for their jobs. It turns out, however, that both the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio and the Energy Information Administration say that coal generates about 78% of the electricity in Ohio.
When prominent politicians make statements that are completely wrong and utterly misleading to corroborate their own political agendas it is not just shameful, it hurts our country and insults our intelligence. Either Boehner didn’t know the facts, or he lied.
If he didn’t know the facts, the does not know what he is talking about, and I don’t trust him. If he knew the facts, he is a liar, and I don’t trust him.
Somehow I digressed from discussing Florida politics to Ohio politics. Returning to Florida:
If I were a Florida voter, I’d vote the Charlie Crist. He shows experience, intelligence, credibility and a willingness to seek advice and do the right thing. And it’s not because he is a Democrat now.