by Pat Raia, [email protected]
Current member of the US House of Representatives and former Florida Governor Charlie Crist (D-Fla) will challenge current Gov. Ron DeSantis to become the next Governor of Florida. Crist made the announcement during a May 4 speech in St. Petersburg.
Crist served as the Republican governor of the state from 2007 to 2011, In 2010 he changed his party affiliation to Independent, and became a registered Democrat in 2012.
In 2017, he was elected to represent Florida's 13th Congressional district in the US House.
In a video message posted on Twitter, Crist accused DeSantis of losing touch with “regular Floridians.”
“Today Florida has a Governor who only focuses on his future, not his,” Crist said. “If you're a Democrat or Republican or Independent, you deserve better.”
DeSantis responded during a press conference in Miami.
“What party is he going to run in this time?” DeSantis asked. “All we're gonna do is lead – do a great job for the State.”
Meanwhile, Spring Hill Republican State Rep. Blaise Ingoglia called Crist a “historic figure in Florida.”
“He is the only person in history to lose a statewide election as a Republican, a Democrat and an NPA,” Ingoglia said. “ I look forward to seeing his message fall flat again with Floridians.”
Crist is the first to officially announce his candidacy in Florida's gubernatorial contest. The race is expected to become more crowded shortly.