Charlie Crist shows Florida voters exactly what he is made of.
Crist criticized for “flip-flop” after scrapping visit to Cuba
The Democratic gubernatorial candidate says he needs the time to focus on principal opponent, Gov. Rick Scott.
TALLAHASSEE — Charlie Crist has scrapped plans to go to Cuba this summer, citing time demands in his campaign for governor and delays in getting federal permission to visit the island nation.
“I had to make a decision,” Crist said. “We’ve got to win this thing, and we can’t sap any more of my time or staff’s time to the detriment of victory. … I need to stay focused on Florida.”
Crist’s about-face was immediately called a “flip-flop” by Gov. Rick Scott’s campaign, and it follows a recent poll that showed his July plans were not popular with Cuban-American voters in Miami-Dade, the state’s most populous county. Crist said his decision not to visit Cuba had nothing to do with public opinion in Miami-Dade, where sentiment about Cuba is more intense than anywhere else in America.
Crist caused a major stir last month when he called for lifting the 1962 U.S. embargo against Cuba, a stance that is gaining popularity with Florida voters. But he went a bold step further and said he wanted to see conditions there first-hand.
Crist said he still supports an end to the embargo and said he’ll plan a visit to Cuba next spring if he wins the election.
“We haven’t changed our mind. It’s just a timing delay,” he said.
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