Charlie Crist, former Republican governor of Florida, has officially joined the Democratic Party. As James Joyner at Outside the Beltway noted:
Crist has long held views that clashed with the Republican orthodoxy and that became problematic in an era where purity and loyalty tests have been demanded.
The Tampa Bay Times noted that Crist had “relished the tough-on-crime nickname ‘Chain Gang Charlie’ and used to describe himself variously as a ‘Ronald Reagan Republican’ and a ‘Jeb Bush Republican’…”
Crist found himself sideways with the Republican Party during the 2010 U.S. Senate election when he was bumped out by tea party favorite Marco Rubio who won the Republican nomination and went on to win the senate seat.