The Senator from Charlie

Florida Republican political consultant Chris Ingram said the two men are as close to being brothers as they could be without sharing the same DNA. A St. Petersburg Times columnist referred to LeMieux as the keeper of Crist’s to-do list. And they’re more than just friends: the Miami Herald reports that Crist’s campaign record reveal that LeMieux’s law firm and its clients have ponied up almost $150,000 for Crist’s campaign war-chest.

LeMieux (French for “it stinks”) moves from campaign “maestro” to first-class seat warmer
By Larry Thornberry

In a story with perhaps more charm than truth, the Roman emperor Caligula in about 40 A.D. was said to have gotten his horse, Incitatus, appointed to the Roman Senate. Pretty dodgy political move. But then Caligula was clinically insane.

Liberal Republican Florida governor Charlie Crist isn’t insane. Insanely ambitious, perhaps. And he didn’t appoint his horse to the U.S. Senate last Friday. Just his horse-holder, George LeMieux.

The forty-year-old LeMieux, now a Ft. Lauderdale attorney, has never held elected office. In his only election bid he ran for a seat in the Florida Legislature in 1998 and lost. Now he’ll serve out the 16 months left of the U.S. Senate term of Republican Mel Martinez, who resigned August 7. LeMieux has pledged not to seek the seat in 2010, paving the way for his former boss and benefactor, Crist, who is running for the seat. Continue reading “The Senator from Charlie”

LeMieux is a “Charlie Crist Republican”

As readers of my column know, in February I predicted Mel Martinez’ resignation and expected Crist to appoint himself to the position – given his decades-old yearning for the U.S. Senate. I held onto this minority view until the end. Readers may remember I pledged to eat a can of Star Kist Tuna (you know, the brand with the “Sorry Charlie” moniker) if he didn’t pick himself.

(Photo: two Democrats embrace.) 

Is Charlie Crist a Republican?

By Chris Ingram

George LeMieux will be Florida’s next (un-elected) United States Senator, following the announcement of Florida Governor Charlie Crist earlier today.

As readers of my column know, in February I predicted Mel Martinez’ resignation and expected Crist to appoint himself to the position – given his decades-old yearning for the U.S. Senate. I held onto this minority view until the end. Readers may remember I pledged to eat a can of Star Kist Tuna (you know, the brand with the “Sorry Charlie” moniker) if he didn’t pick himself.

I maintain picking himself would have been a brilliant move because Chuckles could have gotten out of Dodge before any bad hurricanes hit this season (which have the potential to bankrupt the state), and before the state of our economy and real estate markets further tank.

I think he picked LeMieux because he didn’t want me to be right! (Just kidding of course.)

In picking LeMieux Too-Tan Charlie selected a relative unknown (at least to the general population) who has little, if any political baggage. LeMieux was King Charles’ campaign brain trust and then became his chief of staff before heading for higher pay as a Tallahassee attorney and quasi lobbyist.

Other than that, LeMieux brings Charlie his trust. For Charlie he’s about as close to a brother as one can get without having the same DNA. He’s someone he can trust who won’t upstage him. He’ll consider every vote with an eye out for how it may impact the Chuckster. And most importantly, Sir Charles must believe that Prince George won’t decide he likes the U.S. Senate so much that he wants to stay and ends up running against him. As for all the other characters Charlie “interviewed” for the job, they’re all politicians and despite whatever reassurances they may have made to only serve as a care-taker of Mel Martinez’ remaining term, there would have been lingering doubt in Mr. Tan Man’s mind that they would renege. (Remember, they’re all career politicians which mean they cannot be trusted).

So LeMieux will serve for a little over year and become an asterisk in the history of the U.S. Senate. He’s an empty canvas ready to be painted by the Crist for Senate campaign. Not much is known about his beliefs, but he says he is “…a Charlie Crist Republican.” Whatever the hell that means.  I guess we’ll see a lot of Sen. LeMieux licking his finger and holding it up in the air to see which way the wind blows.

That’s what Charlie does.

Chris Ingram is the president and founder of 411 Communications a corporate and political communications firm, and publisher of www.IrreverentView.com. Ingram is a frequent pundit on Fox News and CNN, and has written opinion columns for the Washington Times, UPI, Front Page Florida, and National Review online. E-mail him at: Chris@411Communications.net.

5 questions with Chris Ingram

St. Pete Times political editor Adam Smith caught up with me at the Republican Party of Florida quarterly meeting on Saturday. You can see his “5 Questions” interview by going to the St. Pete Times Buzz political blog or just click here to go directly to the video on the site.

St. Pete Times political editor Adam Smith caught up with me at the Republican Party of Florida quarterly meeting on Saturday. You can see his “5 Questions” interview by going to the St. Pete Times Buzz political blog or just click here to go directly to the video on the site.

Chris Ingram

Florida GOP Meeting Report

There was a whole lot of hot air at the Gaylord Palms resort in Orlando this weekend as the Republican Party of Florida (RPOF) conducted its quarterly meeting.

Gold Cards Galore!

By Chris Ingram

There was a whole lot of hot air at the Gaylord Palms resort in Orlando this weekend as the Republican Party of Florida (RPOF) conducted its quarterly meeting.

Charlie Crist was there looking all tanned, smiling, and talking as though he is a conservative (really Charlie, you don’t have to be conservative, just stand for something).

Bill McCollum the likely GOP nominee to replace Chuckles the Clown was there too. While McCollum is a good man who has solid conservative credentials and actually believes in something, I’ve been told from numerous sources that in private, McCollum responds to the “why are you running?” question with an answer of “because it’s my turn.” I guess that makes him the Bob Dole of the Fla. GOP. Without a vision for Florida’s future, and probably among the worst public communicators in America. Republicans better start getting used to the idea of saying Governor Sink, the likely Democrat nominee.

Marco Rubio was making the rounds and got a standing ovation (as did Chuckie) when he addressed the committee. Marco is a solid conservative and among the best public speakers I have ever seen. But Marco will lose unless he gets a much better campaign organization, shuffles his inadequate and ill-prepared staff (they listed me as a Doctor of a pathology clinic on his FEC campaign report), improves his anemic fundraising (I contributed $500 three months ago and still have not received a thank you note or a follow-up solicitation — I guess it went to my medical office), and stops spending more time looking at his Blackberry than he does mingling with the crowds.

I don’t think I’ve ever seen TooTan Charlie with a Blackberry in his hands, and certainly not in an environment full of potential supporters. No, Chuckles makes the rounds smiling, shaking hands, feigning interest, and overall doing a great job being a retail politician. Continue reading “Florida GOP Meeting Report”

Crist/Rubio Debate

The debate will of course also allow you a chance to explain what you will do if you are appointed/elected to the U.S. Senate — that is, if you have even thought about that. And of course, it will allow Mr. Rubio the same opportunity — I’ve heard through the grapevine that he actually has some ideas about what he would like to accomplish.

An open letter to Charlie Crist

Dear Governor:

As you are no doubt busy travelling the state putting on this charade that you are going to appoint someone as a caretaker to Mel Martinez’ senate seat (you and I both know you will appoint yourself), I would like to remind you you will be in Orlando this weekend for the Republican Party of Florida’s quarterly meeting.

In an effort to promote your ideas “for the people,” explain all the solutions you have proposed to fix Florida’s insurance crisis you largely created, solve the property tax mess you screwed up with Amendment 1, and explain your support of the Obama, Pelosi, Reid “stimulus” package that hasn’t stimulated anything; as such, I encourage you to challenge Marco Rubio, your Republican Primary opponent to a debate at the quarterly meeting.

As luck would have it, Mr. Rubio will be present at the debate, so there won’t be any opportunity to claim a “scheduling conflict,” to dodge the debate like some anorexic chicken.

The debate will of course also allow you a chance to explain what you will do if you are appointed/elected to the U.S. Senate — that is, if you have even thought about that. And of course, it will allow Mr. Rubio the same opportunity — I’ve heard through the grapevine that he actually has some ideas about what he would like to accomplish.

Following the debate (or if no debate is held, regardless), the RPOF should hold a straw-poll of all state committeemen and women in attendance at the debate. It would be wonderful for the voters of Florida to see whom those who know the most about the current crop of candidates think about the race.

In closing, please don’t let that stooge RPOF Chairman Jim Greer come up with some ridiculous excuse that a debate cannot be held because the party doesn’t have the funds to rent a room at the hotel. I read in today’s paper disgraced former House Speaker Ray Sansom spent over $170,000 on his RPOF issued credit card — under Greer’s watch no less.

In fact, when you tell ol’ Jimbo to schedule the debate, you might want to ask him for his credit card statements.

 See you tonight in Orlando!

Your friend (hey, at least on Facebook),

 

Chris Ingram

Chris Ingram is the president and founder of 411 Communications a corporate and political communications firm, and publisher of www.IrreverentView.com. Ingram is a frequent pundit on Fox News and CNN, and has written opinion columns for the Washington Times, UPI, Front Page Florida, and National Review online. E-mail him at: Chris@411Communications.net.

Continue reading “Crist/Rubio Debate”