Paula Dockery says she’ll support Charlie Crist over Rick Scott

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Former GOP state Senator Paula Dockery said she would back Democrat Charlie Crist over Gov. Rick Scott in the 2014 gubernatorial race — if Crist chooses to run.  

The Lakeland Republican told the Tiger Bay of Tampa that she “can’t see a scenario by which I would stand by a Scott administration,” according to Julie Kliegman of the Tampa Bay TimesDuring her speech, she often criticized the incumbent, especially for his positions on education, private prisons, transportation and the environment.

Crist has the best chances against Scott, Dockery said, due to name recognition. She also told the crowd of about 30 that former state CFO Alex Sink would be her top choice of Democrats to run next year.

Later that afternoon, Sink announced she would not run for governor. On hearing the news, Dockery told reporters she felt it would be too difficult for Sink to raise the funds necessary for another campaign against Scott, even though Sink “had the fire in her belly to run.”

Dockery also said she is “less proud” to be a Republican than when she first campaigned for office in 1996, adding that she is done running for elected office.

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.