Crist Credits Obama with Stopping "Economic Catastrophe" in Florida
Sept 7, 2012 | WMFE - Former Republican Governor Charlie Crist took the stage last night at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. Crist praised the president for the stimulus package, which during Crist's single term the legislature used to patch holes in the state budget : "When he took office, the economic crisis had already put my state of Florida on the edge of disaster. The foreclosure crisis was consuming homeowners, the tourists we depend on couldn't visit, and the vital construction industry had come to a standstill. President Obama saw what I saw a catastrophe in the making and he took action."
Crist who is now an independent said he was not attending the convention as a member of either major party, but still took a swing at the GOP ticket, :"As a former lifelong Republican, it pains me to tell you that today's Republicans -- and their standard-bearers, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan -- just aren't up to the task."
Crist left the GOP after breaking with his party on a number of issues, including teacher merit pay.
The former governor also criticized Romney and Ryan's proposals to convert Medicare to a voucher program for Americans under 55 years of age, : "And particularly important to me and my state of Florida is the challenge of saving Medicare and Social Security so we can keep our promise to our seniors."
After the speech, state GOP Chairman Lenny Curry in a statement called it "a sad, shameful display of political opportunism."
Crist is planning to campaign with the President on part of weekend swing through Florida in St. Petersburg.
Obama is planning a stop in Kissimmee on Saturday and Melbourne on Sunday.