Thursday, July 16, 2009

ALPHA - BRAVO - CHARLIE CRIST maintains radio silence

By Javier Manjarres

Over the past month or so, I have been carefully observing the moves of my favorite politician, Governor Charlie Crist. In the lead up to the public reporting of fundraising figures at the end of the June fundraising cycle, Charlie’s handlers intentionally lowered their public expectations as to what his fundraising haul would be. After those 2nd Quarter fundraising figures were reported last week, every media outlet in the state breathlessly reported how Crist had ‘crushed’ Marco Rubio in fundraising, and as a result, we all might as well stay home next August, because the Republican candidate for Senate has been anointed because of his sheer fundraising prowess.

Blah blah blah. The money from Charlie’s fundraisers came from the establishment types that are in his pocket- or perhaps he is in theirs. Governor Crist did not need any ladder to pick the low hanging fruit from the donation tree. How much effort does it take to fly around the state and pick up checks from well-heeled donors who will max out their contributions for the remainder of the election cycle in one shot?

While Crist has been jet-setting across the state on the taxpayer dime to attend highfalutin big money fundraisers, Marco Rubio has been crisscrossing the state in rental cars, as well as the occasional coach flight on Southwest Airlines, to attend meetings in any type of locale - that are hosted by grassroots Republican organizations in every nook and cranny of the state. These groups are populated with average Americans who are both more informed and activist, these are the more discerning people within the Republican base that matter in primaries.

Having witnesses several of these events myself, these crowds are overwhelmingly pro-Rubio. These are the grassroots supporters that will do all of the important legwork in the heat of the campaign season. At ever event, Marco puts himself and his ideas on the line, taking questions from anyone- and never hesitating to go into great detail on all the issues that will certainly be considered by a United States Senator, not to mention anything else that comes up. Rubio’s financial support as well comes from these same people, from all walks of life. If you don’t believe me, just check out the lopsided results of almost every straw poll conducted by these organizations -

‘Asked about the poll this morning, and another one last month by Pasco County Republicans in which the fiery conservative underdog won 73-9, Crist indicated that the samples are too small to take seriously.

"There's 20 million people in the state of Florida," Crist deadpanned.’- by Jim Ash at

Let’s not forget the recent Lee County REC straw poll in which Governor Crist took another one on the chin-60-11.

And last, but certainly not least, the profound Conservative Republican Alliance straw poll that was conducted a couple of weeks back in the supposed Charlie Crist stronghold that is Broward County.

Marco Rubio (375)


Charlie Crist (61)


Tom Walsh (5)


Belinda Noah (1)


Marion Thorpe (8)


Bob Smith (49)


Gwyn McClellan (0)


Total Votes: 499

Governor Crist’s support of the “Obama-nable” stimulus plan, along with other recent tax hikes, including one on tobacco - have Republicans across the state looking for new leadership.

But yet considering all the news and hype that Governor Crist is generating, it is more than a little bit strange that our Governor has barely put any statements on the record about any issue that impacts Floridians since he declared for Senate. He is both the sitting Governor and a candidate for Senate, and yet Charlie has chosen to go into hibernation. There are many questions that need to be asked of the Governor – whether they are questions that the Governor avoids at all costs, or ones that his handlers screen out, or ones that the media simply do not have the courage to ask.

So I, your ever-loving and civically-concerned conservative, Javier Manjarres, ask the following questions of you, Governor Crist-

Charlie, Why has your campaign been so fixated on fundraising totals, but you maintain complete radio silence on any issue of importance that you will have to deal with as a Senator?

Why do you avoid going in front of Republican and/or conservative organizations- the state RECs, for example- the very people in the Republican Party who are most concerned about its direction – and instead you only appear in front of non-political organizations or your fundraisers?

On the rare occasions when you do take questions from the media, why do you consistently give answers – that are actually non-answers - to almost any question you are asked regarding any political issue or to the race itself?

I will hold not hold my breath and wait for Governor Crist to answer any of these questions.

This is the same politics as usual – the path of least resistance- that opportunistic politicians such as Charlie Crist thrive on. All public officials and candidates for office must be accessible and held accountable to the people. Avoiding tough questions, or venues where you may be thoroughly challenged, are not acceptable practices for those who want to hold power- these are the responsibilities and encumbrances of holding or running for public office.

Charlie needs to get away from the teleprompter, the controlled venues where he chooses the topics and screened questions he will speak to, and start answering legitimate questions from the media that pertain to his Senate bid and the issues that he will face. We’ve just had one stealth candidate with a cleverly disguised agenda become President. This Republican Party in Florida should not allow the same covert campaign tactics to prevail again.

And while Governor Chuckles boasts about endorsements he has received (all moderate-centrist Republicans, Sen. McCain, Martinez and other amnesty-for-illegals supporters like Congressmen Lincoln and Mario Diaz Balart), Rubio has received endorsements from The Club for Growth, Sen. Jim DeMint, Dick Armey and the Huckster himself, Former Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.

As you can see, the line between the liberal establishment of the GOP and the Conservative grassroots movement is clearly being drawn – and more endorsements will be forthcoming. This race, if you haven’t noticed, is drawing national attention, and it will have national implications for the direction of the Republican Party. Which way our Party turns is largely up to you, and how passionately you feel about it.

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