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Crist: I won't pick me for Sen, no favored candidates

It's official: Gov. Charlie Crist said he won't pick himself to succeed U.S. Sen. Mel Martinez (he'll rely on the 2010 electorate to do that). And Crist said he has no favorites to replace the retiring Sen.

"I want to assure my fellow Floridians that we will undertake a very thorough, comprehensive, thoughful process," Crist said.

"Florida will have an opportunity in the next few weeks to make sure that an honest person of great integrity that will protect the public trust will be appointed to go ahead and serve the remainder of this senate term. I will not appoint myself. And I have gotten a lot of recommendations about very qualified people who can serve in this senate term."

Asked about lobbyist Jim Smith or any other favored candidates, Crist said:

"No decision's been made. There is not a short list. There is not a long list. But I'm getting a lot of calls and recommendations and volunteers."

What about appointing Mel Martinez to lead FSU? Crist: "He is a 'Nole, but I don't think he's interested."

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