@CharlieCristFL disagrees with McCollum on Arizona-style immigration law

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Charlie Crist went on CNN’s “The Situation Room” tonight and gave a fascinating interview to host Wolf Blitzer. Among other things, the Republican-turned independent governor:

– Took issue with Republican Attorney General Bill McCollum’s endorsement of an Arizona-like bill that would allow Florida police to check the immigration papers of anyone they had stopped for any legal reason.

“I don’t like the Arizona law, I don’t think it’s the right way to go,” said Crist. “And I think the key word that came out during your introduction was people that are suspected of being illegal immigrants.  Well, how do you make that determination?  By what they look like?  I mean, that’s not part of the America that I believe in.”

– Acknowledged he was attending a fundraiser Wednesday night thrown by friends of Bill and Hillary Clinton and added that his support from Democrats was picking up since he became an independent.

“A lot of friends from the Republican Party have stayed with us, continued to help, and God bless them for that,” he said. “New Democrats who have become very good friends and some Democrats who have been friends for a long time are just stepping up in a much more significant way now.”

– Again refused to say which party he’d caucus with if he wins election Nov. 5. After an extensive back-and-forth with Blitzer, Crist concluded: “And you’ve just hit on the pivotal issue really — what is in the best interest of the people of Florida?  We don’t know who is going to be in the majority after November 2nd, after the general election.  And so, I think it’s important to keep an open mind, to stay committed only to one thing and that’s the people of my state.” Read the full transcript here.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, 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.