In an op-ed in Sunday's Tampa Bay Times, Florida's former Republican Gov. Charlie Crist endorsed President Obama, calling him "the right leader for our state and the nation." Crist was a Republican while serving as governor, but turned independent after losing a bitterly fought GOP U.S. Senate primary to now–Sen. Marco Rubio (R). The Republican Party, Crist writes, has "pitched so far to the extreme right on issues important to women, immigrants, seniors, and students that they've proven incapable of governing for the people." Florida GOP Chairman Lenny Curry dismissed Crist's pre-convention salvo as "a repugnant display from a self-centered, career politician." Crist will reportedly speak at the Democratic National Convention next week.
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