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St. Pete Times endorses Charlie Crist for Senate

Running in Sunday's Times:

"Whatever his flaws, Crist offers a fresh approach and is well known to Floridians. He moves easily among Republicans and Democrats who are not party activists. He is fiscally conservative and socially moderate. He has praised Ronald Reagan and embraced Barack Obama. He respects differing opinions, adopts good ideas regardless of their source and treats everyone with uncommon decency. That is the prescription for restoring the Senate's once-proud tradition of collaboration and compromise.

"Meek, 44, has served a competent eight years in the House. He voted for the economic stimulus package, health care reform, cap-and-trade legislation and financial regulatory reform. But the Democrat has not distinguished himself from the pack in Congress. While in the Legislature, his crowning achievement was a constitutional amendment limiting class sizes that strains state funding and marginally improves student performance.

"Rubio, 39, is exactly what Florida and the nation do not need. He says Washington is broken, but his solution is not to work with Democrats to find common ground on the nation's most pressing problems. He would lock arms with the obstructionists who would rather deny the Obama administration any victories than move the country forward through negotiation and compromise."