Florida GOP picks its final delegates to convention this summer

Republican Party of Florida Chairman Blaise Ingoglia on Saturday selected the 15 delegates and 15 alternates chosen as at-large delegates who had yet to be determined to be part of the state’s contingent of  99 delegates that will represent the Sunshine State at the Republican National Convention:

They include former Miami-Dade Rep. Adam Hasner, who worked on U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio’s presidential campaign; incoming House Speaker Richard Corcoran, who campaigned for former Gov. Jeb Bush in New Hampshire; and Senate President Joe Negron, who also endorsed Bush.

Donald Trump won the Florida GOP presidential primary last month, and all 99 pledged delegates are bound to vote for him at the party’s convention in Cleveland in July.

Electing a president is never easy, but our party is strong, focused, and ready,” said Republican Party of Florida Chairman Blaise Ingoglia. “We have made incredible gains in the past year that outpace the Florida Democrats’ best efforts, and I know every single member of our party is prepared to keep up the hard work to ensure we are successful in November.”

Here’s the entire list:

Automatic Delegates

RPOF Chairman:                           Blaise Ingoglia

Ntl. Committeewoman:                 Sharon Day

Ntl. Committeeman:                      Peter Feaman

At-Large Delegates

Brian Ballard

Majority Leader LizBeth Benacquisto

Robin Bernstein

Speaker-designate Richard Corcoran

Mayor Lenny Curry

Jeffrey Feingold

Adam Hasner

Belinda Keiser

Frmr. U.S. Sen. George LeMieux

Congressman Jeff Miller

Senate President Joe Negron

Speaker-DD Jose Oliva

Mike Barnett

Nancy Watkins

Susie Wiles

At-large Alternates

Rep. Jason Brodeur

Cynthia Crowe

Ron Howse

John Falconetti

Barbara Feingold

Janet Glassman

Karen Harrington

Scott Hoppes

Julie Ingoglia

Fred Karlinsky

William Lasky

Susan Moore

Mitzi Prater

George Scarborough

Robert Wakins

CD 1

Delegate 1          Martin Simmons

Delegate 2          Charlotte Flynt

Delegate 3          Tim Norris

Alternate 1         Dorothy Davis

Alternate 2         Sam Mullins

Alternate 3         Jeremy Evans

CD 2

Delegate 1          Clint Pate

Delegate 2          Evan Power

Delegate 3          Thelma Rohan

Alternate 1         Bill Helmich

Alternate 2         S. Curtis Kiser

Alternate 3         James Wyckoff

CD 3

Delegate 1         Layne Schultetus

Delegate 2          Kay Durden

Delegate 3          Sherri Ortega

Alternate 1         Delores Lansford

Alternate 2         Sherrie McKnight

Alternate 3         Sally Beach

CD 4

Delegate 1          Cindy Graves

Delegate 2          Lake Ray

Delegate 3          Ander Crenshaw

Alternate 1         Danny Norton

Alternate 2         Charles Cordes

Alternate 3         Alexander Pantinakis

CD 5

Delegate 1          Patty Redlich

Delegate 2          Mike Cribby

Delegate 3          Clarence Allen

Alternate 1         Thuy Lowe

Alternate 2         Gloreatha Scurry-Smith

Alternate 3         Caleb Spencer

CD 6

Delegate 1          Tony Ledbetter

Delegate 2          Bill Korach

Delegate 3          Alan Burton

Alternate 1         Jospeh Fieldus

Alternate 2         Paul Porter

Alternate 3         Stuart Epperson

CD 7

Delegate 1          Al Schwarz

Delegate 2          Ray Valdes

Delegate 3          Dana Dougherty

Alternate 1         Kathy Gibson

Alternate 2         Wade Vose

Alternate 3         Phil Kaprow

CD 8

Delegate 1          Carlie Rogers

Delegate 2          Barbara Davis

Delegate 3          Lew Oliver

Alternate 1         Richard Lacey

Alternate 2         Joseph Semprevivo

Alternate 3         Carole Jean Jordan

CD 9

Delegate 1          Rich Crotty

Delegate 2          Tammy Celeste

Delegate 3          Mark Cross

Alternate 1         Ruth Coberley

Alternate 2         Bertica Cabrera-Morris

Alternate 3         Chadwick Hardee

CD 10

Delegate 1          Jim Guth

Delegate 2          Wendy West

Delegate 3          Mark Oxner

Alternate 1         Robbie Ford

Alternate 2         Ronald Janssen

Alternate 3         Patricia Sullivan

CD 11

Delegate 1          Mike Moberley

Delegate 2          Darilyn Dolimpio

Delegate 3          Daniel Wright

Alternate 1         Sandy Balfour

Alternate 2         Lucy Sullivan

Alternate 3         Ana Trinque

CD 12

Delegate 1          Sandy Graves

Delegate 2          Tina Harris

Delegate 3          Chris Sprowls

Alternate 1         Steve Graves

Alternate 2         Pam McAloon

Alternate 3         Mary Gaulden

CD 13

Delegate 1          Nancy Riley

Delegate 2          Dan Tucker

Delegate 3          Nick DiCeglie

Alternate 1         Todd Jennings

Alternate 2         Dorine McKinnon

Alternate 3         Chely Hernandez-Miller

CD 14

Delegate 1          Terry Castro

Delegate 2          Marjorie Mittleman

Delegate 3          Spencer Rogers

Alternate 1         James Buntyn

Alternate 2         Tony DeSisto

Alternate 3         Mike Mikurak

CD 15

Delegate 1          Debbie Hannifan

Delegate 2          Tina Pike

Delegate 3          Dena DeCamp

Alternate 1         Tony Jackson

Alternate 2         Judith Wise

Alternate 3         Mark Proctor

CD 16

Delegate 1          Kathy King

Delegate 2          Joe Gruters

Delegate 3          Christian Ziegler

Alternate 1         David Matthews

Alternate 2         Donna Hayes

Alternate 3         John Colon

CD 17

Delegate 1          Bill Folchi

Delegate 2          Jimmy Nelson

Delegate 3          Kathy Rapp

Alternate 1         Jane Sturges

Alternate 2         Allen Goldstein

Alternate 3         Natalie Schmidt

CD 18

Delegate 1          Bill Paterson

Delegate 2          Mary Ann Russell

Delegate 3          Don Pickard

Alternate 1         Darlene Fuggetta

Alternate 2         Julie Paterson

Alternate 3         Linda Stoch

CD 19

Delegate 1          Mike Lyster

Delegate 2          Jonathan Martin

Delegate 3          Lisa Musial

Alternate 1         Rosealie Lesser

Alternate 2         Jesse Purdon

Alternate 3         Mike Hook

CD 20

Delegate 1          Rico Petrocelli

Delegate 2          Roger Gingerich

Delegate 3          Daniel Diaz

Alternate 1         Patrick Castronovo

Alternate 2         Terrance O’Loughlin

Alternate 3         Camille Petrocelli

CD 21

Delegate 1          Bob Sutton

Delegate 2          Maureen Jaeger

Delegate 3          Tami Donnally

Alternate 1         Marion Frank

Alternate 2         Jay Goldfarb

Alternate 3         Richard Eddins

CD 22

Delegate 1          Cindy Tindell

Delegate 2          Ed Pozzuoli

Delegate 3          Gay Gaines

Alternate 1         Mike Barnett

Alternate 2         Sue Snowden

Alternate 3         Al Massey

CD 23

Delegate 1          Sanjay Narang

Delegate 2          Corey Brier

Delegate 3          Eric Shure

Alternate 1         Richard DeNapoli

Alternate 2         Kevin Cooper

Alternate 3         Florine Goldfarb

CD 24

Delegate 1          Jessica Fernandez

Delegate 2          Kelly Mallette

Delegate 3          Stephanie Woodard

Alternate 1         Uri Benhamron

Alternate 2         Nikita Mizgirev

Alternate 3         Steve Karski

CD 25

Delegate 1          Steve Nisbet

Delegate 2          Margie Nelson

Delegate 3          Carlos Trujillo

Alternate 1         Manny Diaz

Alternate 2         Doug Harrison

Alternate 3         Doug Rankin

CD 26

Delegate 1          Carey Goodman

Delegate 2          Alex Trujillo

Delegate 3          Jeanette Nunez

Alternate 1         Jose Felix Diaz

Alternate 2         Harry Hoffman

Alternate 3         Debby Goodman

CD 27

Delegate 1          Nelson Diaz

Delegate 2          Liliana Ros

Delegate 3          Bernie Navarro

Alternate 1         Rey Lastre

Alternate 2         Rudolfo Milani

Alternate 3         Marili Cancio

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Jeb Bush enjoys outpouring of local support with new Broward campaign organization

With the announcement of a Broward County campaign organization on Friday, GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush is enjoying a wave endorsements from more than 130 state leaders, including 20 of Florida’s 26 state senators.

Earlier this month, Florida House Speakers for Jeb and the Jeb!2016 Miami-Dade County Campaign Leadership announced the support of three Florida Cabinet members and 11 congressional representatives from the Florida delegation.

This latest outpouring from Broward comes as the former Florida governor struggles in home state polling. Donald Trump and Ben Carson, among others, are leading the pack recently by appealing to voters looking toward candidates with strong anti-establishment messages.

Broward County Republicans lining up behind Bush include former U.S. Sen. George LeMieux of Fort Lauderdale as honorary campaign chair; state Rep. George Moraitis and County Commissioner Chip LaMarca are county co-chairs.

According to a statement from Bush campaign officials, the initial Broward County campaign list includes:

Jeb 2016! Broward County Campaign Organization:

Honorary Chairman

U.S. Sen. George LeMieux*

Honorary Co-Chairs

State Rep. George Moraitis
Broward County Commissioner Chip LaMarca*

Campaign Committee Chairs

Ed Pozzuoli*
Paul Sallarulo
Shane Strum
*

Campaign Committee Organizational Chairs

Maureen Jaeger
Rocky Rodriguez

Campaign Committee Co-Chairs

Milton Aponte
Jim Blosser
Dr. Miya Burt-Stewart
Sam Chagani
Berthy De La Rosa-Aponte
David DiPietro
Georgette Sosa Douglas

Cindy Guerra*
Sherry Hage
Jon Hage

Dr. Art Keiser
Belinda Keiser
Clarence McKee
Elaine Miceli Vasquez
Sally Musser
Ryan Reiter
Justin Sayfie
Colleen Stolberg
Norman Tripp
Kevin Tynan
*
Sheela Van Hoose
Levi Williams, Jr.
Bob Wolfe, Jr.
Zach Zachariah
, M.D.

Broward County Campaign Leadership

Fort Lauderdale City Commissioner Bruce Roberts
Mayor of Lighthouse Point Glenn Troast
Lighthouse Point City Commissioner Michael Long
Oakland Park City Commissioner Shari McCartney
Hollywood City Commissioner Patty Asseff

Hillsboro Beach City Commissioner Victoria Feaman
Broward County Republican Party State Committeeman Rico Petrocelli*
South Broward Hospital District Commissioner Laura Raybin Miller
Florida Senate President James A. Scott (1994-1996)
Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle (1991-2009)
Coral Springs Mayor Vincent Boccard (2012-2014)
Coral Springs Vice-Mayor Tom Powers (2008-2014)
Broward County Court Judge Catalina Avalos (2005-2009)
Broward County Republican Party State Committeeman Ed Kennedy (1996-2000, 2004-2012)

Nuvia Abigantus
Ileana Almeida Esq.
Joel Altman
Susan Aprill

Dr. Luis Barreras
Heather Baumwald
Kim Bentley
Nancy Blosser
Tracy Briggs
Rosa Brito
Alfred  Bulkan
Andy Bulkan
Jerome Bulkan
Gloria  Bulkan
Phyllis Bulkan
, M.D.
Kim Campanile
Charlie Caulkins
Ashton Charles
Joy Cicero
Lauren Cobb
Brady Cobb
Syliva Cobo
Joseph Cobo, Sr.

Richard DeNapoli*
Richard Ferris
Jean Findeiss
Cliff Findeiss
Lina Garcia
Phillip George,
M.D.
Mary George, MD
Samuel Goren
Juanita Gray
Laurel  Harris
Doug Harrison
Suzanne Higgins
Karin Hoffman
Robert Keiser
Kaki Kirby
Rob Kornahrens
Eileen LaMarca
Julie Lauder
Nadina Lavernia

Dr. Ivan Lavernia
Donna Linder
Andrea Macatangay
Johanne Marcoux
Louise Marks
David Maymon
Barbara McNulty
Michele Merrell
Gladys C. Millan
Linda Mills
Cristina Mineo
Heather Moraitis
George Morgan, Jr.
Lisa Oliveri
Mark O’Loughlin
Camille Petrocelli
Lais Pontes
Georgina Pozzuoli
Tina Quant
June Quinn
John Radtke
Nancy Reyes
Carlos Reyes
Brandon Rodriguez
Daniel Ruoss
Elaine Salen
Kathy Salerno
Ron Scott
Daniel Seigel
Dr. Tiffany Sizemore-Ruiz
Phil Smith
Dennis Smith
Margaret Stein
Theresa Sutton
Priscilla Swanberg
Daniel Taylor
Joe Thomas,
D.D.S.
Cynthia Wagner
Christine Welch
Richard Welch
TC Wolfe
Alexis Yarborough
Rachel Zachariah
Reggie Zachariah
Alexander Zachariah
, Esq.
Richard Zaden

*Indicates former chair of the Broward County Republican Executive Committee

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Personnel note: Chamber taps former Daniel Webster aide as new influencer

U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster‘s former chief of staff has been named the Florida Chamber of Commerce’s vice president of government affairs, the Chamber announced in a Friday press release.

Frank Walker III also worked for three other U.S. lawmakers: Former U.S. Sens. George LeMieux and Mel Martinez of Florida, and U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert of Washington state.

“After more than a decade in Washington, I know the solutions to the challenges facing Florida and our nation come from the state and local level,” Walker said in a prepared statement.

“I am excited to join the Florida Chamber’s unparalleled team … to advance these solutions, unleash free enterprise and secure Florida’s future as a leader in our 21st century, global economy.”

The Chamber called the hire part of a “larger, more aggressive move by the Florida Chamber to prepare for Florida’s next election cycles and legislative sessions.”

More from the release:

Additionally, Walker’s experience includes serving on multiple congressional campaigns, including campaigns for Webster, Reichert, Steve Southerland for Congress and Bob Corker for U.S. Senate.

“Combining the Florida Chamber’s longstanding pro-business advocacy efforts with Frank’s experience and talent puts Florida’s businesses in a winning position,” said U.S. Rep. Dan Webster (R-FL-10).

“The Florida Chamber’s board of directors and veteran team of professionals are dedicated to securing Florida’s future, and Frank Walker shares that passion for growing the private sector, creating jobs to help Florida families prosper and making Florida a global leader,” said Mark Wilson, president and CEO of the Florida Chamber. “Adding Frank’s expertise will further enhance our focus on making Florida more competitive.”

Walker joins the Florida Chamber’s government affairs team, which is spearheaded by David Hart, executive vice president. He will oversee a team of 25+ pro-business advocates … Frank is a Tallahassee native, a graduate of Davidson College in Davidson, N.C., and he and his wife Katie have a daughter Fiona, and are expecting their second child.

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Republican Rick Kozell announces run for Florida’s CD 18

Attorney and Republican activist Rick Kozell is announcing he will launch a bid for South Florida’s 18th Congressional District based in Palm Beach County.

Kozell is running as an outsider who, like most Americans, is fed up with dysfunction and gridlock in Congress.

“Today, Congress seems more focused on growing the bureaucracy than on solving problems. It’s time we fix Washington and restore America’s reputation abroad,” Kozell said in a statement.

“Throughout our community, working people are struggling while big government in Washington is thriving,” Kozell continued. “We need a congressman who will fight to promote greater opportunities for hard-working Floridians and to create a healthy economy for everyone. As a former small business owner, I have seen first-hand that a rising tide of prosperity can lift all ships. I have been blessed to be the beneficiary of the American Dream and it is time we restore that Dream for everyone.”

The Jupiter native and Georgetown University Law Center graduate pointed to his experience as counsel for a Republican member of a federal administrative court.

“For the past year, I have fought the Obama Administration’s attempts to increase the reach of government into our local communities and small businesses. Now it’s time to take the fight to Congress,” Kozell declared.

Kozell has also previously worked as a law clerk in the U.S. Senate alongside Republican members of the Judiciary Committee, and for former U.S. Sen. George LeMieux of Florida and longtime U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, whom Kozell’s campaign called a “conservative hero.”

Kozell is hoping to take the 18th District back from the Democrats, who took it when former U.S. Rep. Allen West was felled by U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy in 2012. The open seat was left vacant when Murphy decided to run for the U.S. Senate earlier this year.

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Mitch Perry Report for 4.21.15 — Odds looking better for David Jolly for Senate in ’16?

A week ago I spoke with someone close to David Jolly about the fact that the Pinellas County congressman was going to take some time to consider a candidacy for the U.S. Senate in 2016.

There were and are a number of pros and cons, of course, for the still newbie Republican representative to contemplate in making such a momentous career decision. The biggest downside is the very real possibility that after yearning to serve in Washington for perhaps his entire adult life, he could, if unsuccessful, leave that all behind after just a couple of years in office.

But there were two obstacles for Jolly — part of the political equation a week ago — that have gone away. They are Will Weatherford and Tom Rooney, both of whom say they won’t run for the seat.

It was Rooney’s name that made him formidable. The scion of the family that has owned the Pittsburgh Steelers, he represents a wide swath of the state in his unwieldy District 17 seat that has included a small portion of Hillsborough County.

“While I feel like I could mount a successful statewide campaign, the toll I believe the process would take on my family is something I cannot put them through,” Rooney said  in a statement yesterday. “There is no greater responsibility I have than the upbringing of my three young sons. Therefore, I will not seek the Republican nomination for Senate in 2016.”

So who’s left standing? If the names are Bill McCollum and George LeMieux, you know the Democrats will be cheering.

There are plenty of other Republicans contemplating the race: Carlos Lopez-Cantera could catch fire, and Don Gaetz and Vern Buchanan are going to have money to burn if they get into the race.

It’s all part of the equation for the 42-year-old Jolly to consider. He may ultimately decide that it’s better for him to stay in the House (and based on voting patterns, it will be a challenge for any Republican in an open seat in a presidential election year), but it’s not as intimidating a challenge as it was just a week ago.

In other news….

Well, that “conscience protection” bill that religious groups in Florida say is necessary for them not to have to allow gays to adopt may be dead in the Florida Senate, which means the entire Legislature. Yesterday Senate Rules Committee Chairman Dave Simmons didn’t seem to be in that big of a hurry to get a vote on the bill before the committee’s four-hour meeting came to a close at 5 p.m.

Hillsborough County’s transit agency HART still has dreams of getting some funding from Tallahassee this spring, but those hopes are faint with less than two weeks to go in the regular session.

Jeb Bush still leads the field over Scott Walker in a CNN poll released yesterday among Republican candidates for 2016. But Hillary Clinton is crushing both Bush and Marco Rubio in the survey.

And we’ve got a wrap-up on our weekend in New Hampshire with all of the GOP presidential hopefuls here for your perusal.

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Marco Rubio brings in record-setting $4.5 mil haul

A campaign spokesman for Republican Senate hopeful Marco Rubio says they raised $4.5 million in the quarter ending June 30.

The campaign said Monday that Rubio has now raised more than $11 million in his quest for the Senate seat now held by Republican George LeMieux, who was appointed last year to fill the term vacated by former Sen. Mel Martinez.

The campaign claimed more than 75,000 people have donated to Rubio’s warchest.

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George LeMieux getting credit for Obama administration’s idea for BP escrow fund

Marc Ambinder’s Night Beat is the first time I’ve seen it in print at the national level, but Florida U.S. Sen. George LeMieux is getting the credit for the Obama administration’s plan to force BP to establish a multi-billion dollar escrow fund:

A leadership moment for President Obama. He plans an Oval Office address at 8:00 pm EST Tuesday to address his proposal for a BP escrow fund and discuss a government-wide initiative to re-regulate the oil industry as well as what one White House official called a sense of “realism” on when the American people should expect the spill to be contained and things to begin to return to normal.  It will be a relatively short address, his aides say.

The idea for it came together last week, when White House officials and the President agreed on the BP escrow idea as the stick to bring to Wednesday’s meetings with BP executives. The idea had been floating around Congress (and was first proposed by Sen. George LeMieux (R-FL), who will appear with the President in Florida during his two-day tour of the region). … Local television stations in Alabama and Mississippi have begun showing pictures of oil washing ashore. Florida is preparing boom-line to try to contain oil that is spreading toward Pensacola Beach. … Democrats are happy that Republicans seem to be backing away from liability caps, a signal to them that their frontal pressure on BP is politically popular. Republicans wonder whether Tuesday night will be seen as Obama’s Jackson Square moment, or whether it resets the public perception of his handling of the oil spill.

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George LeMieux getting credit for Obama administration’s idea for BP escrow fund

Marc Ambinder’s Night Beat is the first time I’ve seen it in print at the national level, but Florida U.S. Sen. George LeMieux is getting the credit for the Obama administration’s plan to force BP to establish a multi-billion dollar escrow fund:

A leadership moment for President Obama. He plans an Oval Office address at 8:00 pm EST Tuesday to address his proposal for a BP escrow fund and discuss a government-wide initiative to re-regulate the oil industry as well as what one White House official called a sense of “realism” on when the American people should expect the spill to be contained and things to begin to return to normal.  It will be a relatively short address, his aides say.

The idea for it came together last week, when White House officials and the President agreed on the BP escrow idea as the stick to bring to Wednesday’s meetings with BP executives. The idea had been floating around Congress (and was first proposed by Sen. George LeMieux (R-FL), who will appear with the President in Florida during his two-day tour of the region). … Local television stations in Alabama and Mississippi have begun showing pictures of oil washing ashore. Florida is preparing boom-line to try to contain oil that is spreading toward Pensacola Beach. … Democrats are happy that Republicans seem to be backing away from liability caps, a signal to them that their frontal pressure on BP is politically popular. Republicans wonder whether Tuesday night will be seen as Obama’s Jackson Square moment, or whether it resets the public perception of his handling of the oil spill.

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George LeMieux wanted GOP boss to stay; Brian Ballard wanted him gone, source tells Sunshine News

Gov. Charlie Crist says he wasn’t aware of Jim Greer’s financial freelancing, but he apparently received plenty of input from two of his closest political advisers about the party boss.

As reports of Greer’s wheeling and dealing with Republican Party funds and credit cards began to surface in 2008 and 2009, the governor was lobbied hard by George LeMieux and Brian Ballard, according to a source familiar with the situation.

LeMieux urged Crist to keep Greer on board; Ballard advised Crist to cut him loose, the source said.

Crist sided with LeMieux, and Greer ultimately resigned amid a rising furor over his extravagant — and potentially criminal — use of party funds.

“LeMieux has serious problems because George was (Greer’s) protector,” said the source, a South Florida political operative who spoke on condition of anonymity.

LeMieux had served as Crist’s chief of staff until January 2008, when he returned to the law firm of Gunster Yoakley. On Aug. 28, 2009, Crist appointed him to fill the Senate seat vacated by Mel Martinez — a seat that Crist is now seeking as a “no party affiliation” candidate.

Ballard is a partner at the firm of Smith, Ballard & Logan, and one of Florida’s most powerful lobbyists. He was chief of staff for former Gov. Bob Martinez and was Florida co-chairman for Sen. John McCain’s presidential campaign in 2008.

A spokeswoman for LeMieux’s office in Washington, D.C., said, “Senator LeMieux had no knowledge of any fund-raising scheme involving Victory Strategies, Jim Greer or (former party executve director) Delmar Johnson and he would have objected to the scheme had he learned of it and called for Greer’s resignation.”

Ballard did not return phone calls seeking comment.

Still, questions over what they and the governor knew and when they knew it will inevitably arise as state prosecutors press their case against Greer.

The disgraced RPOF chairman, appointed by Crist, was arrested last week and charged with six felony counts of fraud, theft and money laundering.

Crist maintains that he knew nothing about Greer’s alleged misdealings, including the chairman’s Victory Strategies scheme, which reportedly siphoned $200,000 of party donations to himself and Johnson.

At one point, the governor called Greer’s indictment “surprising.”

As investigators delved into the Greer operation, party fund-raiser Meredith O’Rourke told the Florida Department of Law Enforcement that Greer approached her with a plan to “make even more money.” She said she rebuffed the overture.

Greer’s attorney, Damon Chase, said last week that “everyone” knew what the chairman was doing.

Whether “everyone” included Crist remains to be seen.

“Whatever Greer knows, it will be embarrassing,” the source said.

Another source, a GOP campaign consultant speaking on background, agreed the Greer spells trouble for the governor, but discounted the notion of a LeMieux-Ballard split.

Suggesting that Ballard would not have pushed hard for Greer’s removal, the Tallahassee-based operative said, “I think that’s a bit of revisionist history.”

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George LeMieux ‘saddened’ by Charlie Crist’s independent run

Sen. George LeMieux on Charlie Crist’s independent U.S. Senate run:

“I am saddened that my friend, Governor Crist, has decided to leave the Republican Party. Our friendship runs deep, but my commitment to the principles of the Republican Party runs deeper. I cannot walk down the path he has chosen.

“Now more than ever, our nation’s future depends on our ability to uphold the core Republican ideals of fiscal restraint, peace through strength, individual liberty, personal responsibility and smaller government.

“I will support our Republican nominee and will continue to do everything I can both in Florida and across the country to increase the number of Republicans in the United States Senate.”

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