Friday, November 01, 2013

Bill Nelson, back in the governor's race? … by gimleteye

EOM has generally been ahead of the mainstream press on this one, so here we go again: US Senator Bill Nelson will jump in soon, in the race to be the Democratic candidate for governor.

Nelson's in-out-in-decision comes at considerable expense to candidates challenging Gov. Rick Scott, especially Charlie Crist who is in de facto campaign mode.

Polling indicates either Crist or Nelson can unseat Scott, one of the most unpopular governors in the nation. Of the two, though, Nelson has a much easier path to victory. Republicans are salivating at the chance to beat Crist, the turncoat whose chief flaw was to antagonize serious Republican money like Big Sugar. Nelson, in comparison, is easy-going and doesn't offend a soul.

But what of the US Senate seat that Nelson would leave? The governor appoints the successor Senator in the case of an abandoned seat. That's what recently occurred when Mel Martinez resigned from the world's most exclusive upper chamber. Then Republican Governor Charlie Crist appointed his former chief of staff, George Lemieux, for the interim.

Can Nelson run for governor while preserving his Senate seat? If he defeats Scott in next November's election, does he technically surrender his seat on his victory or on inauguration? And who among Florida Democrats could run and win? Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz?

These questions have preoccupied Florida's small Democratic brain trust. The uncertainty may have clouded Senator Nelson's response to the challenge of running for governor last summer. But cooler weather is here. The rains have lifted. Skies are clear and Bill Nelson will run for governor.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

On a side note, whatever happened to Mel Martinez? I remember he resigned but don't remember why. What happened?

I doubt Bill Nelson will resign a very safe seat to run for a position he has historically never been able to win at least two times prior that I remember.

Gimleteye said...

It is a good question about Martinez. Some enterprising reporter should dig out the story … I doubt it would reflect well on the GOP.

Anonymous said...

Even though i like bill nelson i think that would not help the democratic party of unseating rick scott . Bill nelson and rick scott will beat and pound the living thing out of charlie crist which to me would be a bad situation . I believe bill nelson should stay put, charlie will do great but a friend close to crist did tell me that he is on the short list to be lieutenant governor so lets see but we need to back charlie crist

Anonymous said...

Nelson needs to stay put. With all these crazy people in Washington, His vote is much more needed in the US Senate than in the role of governor. In the vote counting process, we need complete and total control in the Senate. Scott is weak enough for us to remove him from office. We don't need a heavy-hitter, just another name. With the long and growing list of decisions he has made to hurt Floridians, the mantra will be "anybody but Scott". Crist or anyone else will be fine. Debbie needs to stay in the House. She speaks the language House Members understand and is Speaker of the House material. Florida has never had a Member of its delegation to be Speaker. It is an extremely powerful position for any state to have one of its members in this role. And not many states have anyone with these skills and capabilities. Many are just seat warmers. In terms of the Senate, what we need to be doing is getting someone, maybe a woman, ready to get our Senate seat held by Rubio.

Anonymous said...

This decision transcends Nelson's personal ambitions and desires and has national and global economic implications. Obama is struggling to put in place growth in our economy and a framework for major strides in this regard. ACA, immigration and some others are major foundational pieces to help us get there. He does not need any uncertainty in the Senate. Once these initiatives are firmly in place, Clinton will be back in the Whitehouse and she will be ready to put our economy and the world's economy on all cylinders. Massive expansion of our ecomony is a democratic vision for our country, and as world leader, a vision for the world's economy as well. We don't need anymore bumps in the road. The republicans are doing everything they can to keep this vision from becoming a reality. So, hold the line Senator, stay in place.

Anonymous said...

If Bill runs and wins. It opens up the seat that Charlie wanted and will win, which is the Senate seat.

Its that simple.

Anonymous said...

But there is a good chance Charlie may not win the senate seat. And we will have two republicans ( i. e. crazy people) in the senate. We can't afford to take that risk. The governorship is a sure bet for anyone who is the democratic nominee, why put our top horse there? Crist gets back into the game as governor, and Lord knows he has a lot of clean-up work to do, and we hold on to our vote in the senate. He has been governor before so he can hit the ground running with a small learning curve. I hope Nelson understands that it is our enemies who are whispering in his ears. Don't listen to them, stay put.

Anonymous said...

Charlie Crist is Running for governor , announcement has just been made .

Anonymous said...

While he is running he also has to prepare for governing. Everything needs to be ready so that as soon as he has been sworn in, at lot happens in that first week before the celebrations begin.

He needs to immediately sign the papers to expand Medicaid accepting $51 billion dollars in our money paid to the federal government that will create 120,000 new jobs over the next 10 years. He needs to get the IT people moving and get our ACA statewide marketplace website in place. All they have to do now is duplicate the success of other states. High speed rail people in Central Florida need to get in gear now. Crist will need to immediately call Obama and let him know he shares his vision for a high speed line between Tampa and Orlando and ask where he need to get in line to get the money. It was $2.4 billion when Scott refused the money, it is probably more now. Then he needs to begin clean up of the unemployment benefits operation so people can quickly get their unemployment payments.

Finally, he needs to begin to get the judicial nomination process back in order. With those things in motion, it will be time to celebrate!

Anonymous said...

DWS has zero chance of ANY statewide office. She is far left of center and has an obnoxious personality. She is stuck in Broward. The only plus to her running statewide is that she would abandon her safe Congressional seat to be replaced by a more likeable Democrat.

Malagodi said...

What a sad mess this is.

The Democrats offer:
1. Charlle Crist, the ex-Republican whose most important issue is his mirror.
or
2. Bill Nelson, the man who offends no one, whose focus is lost-in-space.

and everyone ignores the announced Democratic progressive candidate Nan Rich, because well, ... that obviously wont work.

What a mess.

Anonymous said...

We play the hand we are dealt, it is not a mess. Everything is falling into order. We have to move the chains on our watch. And right now we have to do our very best for the country, the state, and the world. We have lost enough time with Scott. And on earth, time is currency.

DWS fits well within the organizational culture of the House. They are top dogs who have beat all the little dogs in their communities to get to Washington. They have to be dealt with a certain way. Debbie can handle them and move the country forward. Because of the seniority system there, she needs to stay in place. In the meantime, she is playing a very critical role. Everyone can't be mealy-mouths. You have to have some hard liners to move the agenda forward.

Anonymous said...

If Nan Rich wants to run and she thinks she can beat Crist, she should run. Elections are performance-based numerical ventures nothing more. If she loses, she must be prepared to work just as hard to elect Crist. There is too much at stake for her to engage in foolishness. Whatever she decides to do, there are critical roles that she can play at either the national or state levels.

Anonymous said...

Even if she doesnot win it might be a good thing for her to run. It allows her to develop working relationships with communities and people all around the state, nurture relationships with funders, and generally learn a lot about the state. She could be key to getting women excited about this election and turning out the women vote in the general election to defeat Scott. We have got to start giving more women visibility so they can assume more leadership roles.

Anonymous said...

I don't think Florida has ever had a woman governor. But as the nation prepares for its first female President, you may be right, we need to relook at these women. After all, they decide who is governor since there are more female voters than male voters in FL.

Prem Lee Barbosa said...

democrats should clean up their house. As long as Obama's got Terror Tuesday the Democrats don't have a leg to stand on.

Politics as usual, excuse me while I go back to not caring about this garbage.