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Charlie Crist's claim on economic turnaround faces Truth-O-Meter

The Republican Party has tried to boil down the comparison between Florida Gov. Rick Scott and his rival, former Gov. Charlie Crist, with four words: "Crist crash, Scott surge."

Crist -- a Republican-turned-independent while serving as governor from January 2007 to January 2011, was indeed in office during the economic downturn. His successor, Scott, has been in office during the recovery. Crist, now a Democrat, wants his old job back -- and he argues that the economic recovery actually started on his watch, not Scott’s.

He made that argument in a March 9, 2014, interview with CNN’s Candy Crowley:

Crowley: "Can I get you in a yes or no to get you to tell me whether you think the economy is better than it was when the governor (Scott) took office?"

Crist: "I think it is, yes. You can. And I'm always comfortable telling the truth but that turnaround started at the end of my term. And one of the reasons is I accepted the stimulus money, saved thousands of teachers’ jobs, law enforcement officers, firefighters, (is that) it was the right thing to do. … President Obama said, I want to help you, and I said yes as a Republican to a Democratic president. Not because it was political, but because it was right."

We have previously fact-checked Crist’s claims about the stimulus. But PolitiFact’s Truth-O-Meter revs up when we hear candidates make a point of saying they’re "telling the truth." Here we will fact-check Crist’s claim that the economic turnaround started at the end of his term.

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