Every political race is about the past and the future. But we're going to spend more looking at history as we unwind the reversals of everyone: Charlie Crist on his party affiliations and positions, Republicans on tearing Crist down over what they once supported.... and don't forget the Democrats.
To that end, the Republican Party of Florida happily spun out a video about how the former governor "ran away" from the state -- and it uses current Crist adviser Steve Schale's March 6 2009 video criticisms of the then-Senate candidate. Schale at the time was allied with Democratic candidate Dan Gelber, who dropped out months later and endorsed Kendrick Meek. The Democrat then watched the independent Crist syphon votes from him as Republican Marco Rubio won the 2010 race.
But enough about that history. Here's what Schale had to say about Crist back then:
“I may be one of the few people out there who actually love the idea of a matchup with Crist. I’d love to have a good debate in this state about where we’ve been and where we need to go and the leadership that Gov. Crist has provided… double-digit unemployment in the state --basically no growth. Education system: Hardly any changes at all.
“Governor Crist, I think, is a fantastically nice man. He’s always been very kind to me when I’ve met him. But listen. This state and this country deserve real leadership. And it’s sort of hard to argue that, when it comes to leadership or no leadership, Gov Crist has chosen the … the most politically expedient route. Not the kind of route that will get us to where we need to go.”
One big advantage for Schale: How unfailingly nice he is. He didn't trash Crist personally.
It's a stark lesson for all prognosticators, pundits and politicos (and a line I learned from Florida Senate President Don Gaetz): Coat your words with honey so that they're sweet if you have to eat them.