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2014 Watch

Charlie Crist: GOP's 'intolerable' views turned me into a Democrat

Charlie Crist: GOP's 'intolerable' views turned me into a Democrat

Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist says he bolted the Republican Party because it was perceived as being "anti-women, anti-immigrant, anti-minority, anti-gay, anti-education, anti-environment."

Crist, who switched his party affiliation from Republican, to Independent, to Democrat, is trying to unseat Gov. Rick Scott (R) this fall and take back his old job. And in an interview with Fusion's Jorge Ramos on Tuesday, Crist denied that he left his old party because he was afraid of Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio. (Crist changed his party ID in 2010 when polls showed Rubio destroying him in a hypothetical Senate primary.) Rather, Crist said he switched sides because the GOP leadership "went off the cliff," and because some in the party had "intolerable" attitudes toward minorities.

"I couldn't be consistent with myself and my core beliefs, and stay with a party that was so unfriendly toward the African-American president," he said. "I'll just go there."

"Now that I am liberated as a Democrat, my true soul is able to be seen," he added, "and I couldn't be happier about it."