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Charlie Crist's major challenge: the apathetic voters of South Florida

@MarcACaputo & @stevebousquet

Sam Oser is 88, and he wants to live long enough to see a Democrat get elected governor of Florida again — even one who used to be a Republican.

So Oser is ready to embrace Charlie Crist, a career politician of changing stripes who’s a Democratic newcomer. No matter, says the West Palm Beach retiree: Democrats are doomed to irrelevance until they reclaim the Governor’s Mansion after a 16-year absence.

“We’re outnumbered,” Oser said of the Republicans’ dominance in Florida, sipping coffee at a Dunkin’ Donuts. “The only way we can move ahead is to have a Democratic governor.”

The Bronx-born Oser, a World War II veteran who needs a walker to get around his Century Village retirement complex, is now a foot soldier in an increasingly diverse army of South Florida Democrats who view Republican Gov. Rick Scott as vulnerable and believe their best hope is Crist, his predecessor.

But for Crist to win, South Florida voters need to do something they haven’t done in years: vote in bigger numbers in a governor’s race.

About a third of Florida’s 4.6 million Democrats live in the three-county metropolis of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach, a sprawling breadbasket of liberalism that proved critical in both of President Barack Obama’s Florida victories.

But off-year or midterm races for governor are a different story.

Year after year, voters in the Democratic region are among the state’s worst when it comes to showing up at the polls. It was most glaring in 2010 when Scott won office and statewide voter turnout was a meager 49 percent.

The turnout in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties was worse: about 41, 40 and 47 percent, respectively. If those three counties had voted at the state average, Democrat Alex Sink likely would have beaten Scott by nearly 250,000 votes statewide. Instead, Sink lost by 61,550 votes.

Crist vows that won’t happen again.

more here

Comments

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ed jenkins

The voters except in rare cases such as when distracted by catastrophic events cannot be blamed for the choices they make in elections and this article writer is displaying bias towards one party that has offended many readers causing them to cancel subscriptions is large numbers over the years. This state voted for democrat governors throughout most of its history and this no one made excuses about the year which the election took place back then and blamed voters. What has changed is that this party has done everything possible to chase away its primary voters including this one with its anti-business, anti-family and many other extreme positions hostile to the citizens of florida.

This practice of presenting horrible candidates in the last 20 years has continued with the worst find yet in the scumbag crist who once held positions similar to the citizens but now to join the democrat party after also previously the independent party has adopted these most offensive positions at least he says now wjile having the legacy of leaving the state in dire financial straits. This scott however was initially doubted as a political novice but has won the people over with his exemplary fiscal stewardship. Democrat primary voters including this one are not required to and cannot be always expected to vote their party leaders wishes and these last 20 years they have not done so as a result of dissatisfaction with candidates and the party leaders and it appears that will be the case once again this year.

Mrs. Ed Jenkins

Ed how could you especially on Easter. You promised to
stop your posting addiction for at least this one day.

Seth Platt

Floridians deserve a Governor who is more toward the center of the political spectrum and not an immoveable political ideologue that caters to only a small segment of the the population. That is why I am supporting Charlie Crist.

Seth Platt

Floridians deserve a Governor who is more toward the center of the political spectrum and not an immoveable political ideologue that caters to only a small segment of the the population. That is why I am supporting Charlie Crist.

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