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Not a good day for Charlie Crist: continuing coverage of Jim Greer’s resignation

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Normally, you’d need to be a Florida politics junky to care that the Chairman of the Florida GOP, Jim Greer, resigned his office yesterday. But this is an ominous sign for Charlie Crist in the Florida senate primary and another sign of right-wing power in the nationwide GOP battle between moderates and the Tea Party/Club for Growth right. This one’s a big deal.

Update – 5:50 p.m. – Former House Speaker Bense said Wednesday he planned to fill in for Thrasher during the two-month session, and that there would be no let-up in fundraising during that window.

“I’m looking forward in March and April to raising a lot of money for statewide races,” Bense said. “I certainly hope that John Thrasher will be focused on being a Florida Senator, but I certainly don’t expect him to do any fundraising during that period of time. We’ll take care of that.”

Update – 2:33 p.m. – Florida and the Law of Unintended Consequences

Update – 2:24 p.m. – Buzz: Thrasher rival says GOP grass roots were ‘disrespected

Update – 2:22 p.m. – Herald: Marco Rubio ducks questions on FL GOP leadership

Update – 10:59 a.m. – Say what: Crist on Greer’s departure:

“I’m sorry to see him go because I know how hard he worked particularly in the area of minority outreach and I’m very proud of that. Having said that I think that Sen. Thrasher will do an extraordinary job as chairman. And I have great respect for John. And I think it’s very important to have a unified party as we enter into this new year and a very important election year. So, those are my thoughts.”

Update – 10:57 a.m. – “If you look at the people supporting Thrasher, these are all the same people who supported Greer,” said Pasco GOP committee member Bill Bunting

Update – 9:49 a.m. – Talking Points Memo: GOPers taking Florida shakeup in stride.

Updte – 8:46 a.m. – Bay County REC not so sure about Thrasher as party chair:

Bay REC head John Salak said Tuesday he many not support Thrasher. He had no negative words for the St. Augustine Republican but said he wanted someone who could devote all of his time to party politics.

“We are in the 2010 election cycle, with change in the air,” said Salak, one of three on the Bay REC who will vote on Greer’s replacement. “To me, it will take someone who won’t be conflicted by having to attend to legislative duties.”

Bay County state Committeewoman Melissa Hagan agreed that a potential dual roll concerns her, but hedged when asked if she would support a candidate who also was a sitting senator.

Politico: Greer resigns in setback for Crist

Overnight – The Reid Report: Burning down the house, Florida GOP style

Overnight – Mark Silva: Florida GOP chief out, twine unwinding?

Overnight – Mark Lane: Crist’s political reputation comes full circle in Year 4

Overnight – Mike Thomas: Florida Republican Party needs to declare neutrality in Senate race

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.

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