Dems in Nan Rich’s home county vote “no” on debate with Charlie Crist

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Nan Rich suffered a setback in her home territory when the Broward County Democratic Executive Committee voted against a resolution calling for a primary debate in the governor’s race between Rich and Charlie Crist.

As the former Republican governor who switched to independent in 2010, eventually becoming a Democrat in 2012, Crist is favored over Rich — a former state Senate Democratic leader — to be the Democratic gubernatorial nominee.

Crist repeated dismissed Rich’s calls for primary debates, telling reporters he is focused only on GOP Gov. Rick Scott.

Broward County DEC Chairman Mitch Ceasar told George Bennett of the Palm Beach Post that the party’s Management Committee — made up of about 20 officials — had a “significant and emotional” discussion before voting down the resolution for a Crist-Rich debate.

Ceasar did not disclose vote totals or specifics on how individuals voted.

There are 563,805 registered Democrats in Broward County, more than any other county in the state.

After bringing up the plan, Broward County Democratic State Committeewoman Maggie Davidson, a Rich supporter, told the Post she was “disappointed but they feel as though the bottom line, I guess, was we didn’t want to have any divisiveness.”

On Monday, the Hillsborough County Democratic Executive Committee approved a resolution calling for a debate between Crist and Rich.

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Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.