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Charlie Crist announcement fractures local Republican Party

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Noah Pransky reports: The fallout from Gov. Charlie Crist’s no-party U.S. Senate run is already taking it’s toll on the local Republican Party.

As the Republican Party of Florida (RPOF) encourages members to take a loyalty oath, a number of pro-Crist Republicans have changed their official party registration from Republican to either Independent or Democrat.

They include former St. Pete mayoral candidate Deveron Gibbons, who registered as an Independent on Wednesday.

“While I agreed with some of the things the party stood for, not all of them did I agree with, and I was in the middle ground,” Gibbons said.

Crist had said he wasn’t leaving Republicans; the Republican Party left him.  But Pinellas County GOP State Committeeman Tony DiMatteo said the opposite is true. Continue reading here:

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

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