Sunburn — The morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics — 5.4.21

It’s been said for decades that if Charlie Crist could just shake every voter’s hand in the state, he could win any election.

“He will try to shake every hand,” observed John Morgan, the Orlando rainmaker, currently unaffiliated. “The thing about Charlie, he feeds off people. He truly enjoys the retail politics in politics.”

Crist, the Democratic Congressman and once a Republican Governor, is ready to announce the “Charlie Crist for Governor 3.0” campaign Tuesday in his hometown of St. Petersburg.

There may be no politician in Florida with more history, more career twists and turns, or more wins and losses. There are few whom Florida voters know better. There’s also almost no one with more baggage.

Charlie Crist, Florida’s consummate retail politician.

Yet there may be no one in Florida with Crist’s gift for person-to-person charm, with voters, with volunteers, with lawmakers, with journalists, and, perhaps most significantly, with donors.

He is notoriously late for every event because he gets distracted to talk with every person he meets on his way over. Afterward, Crist never gets hustled out a back door.

“Charlie loves people,” said Bob Poe, the former Florida Democratic Party chair who battled against Crist for years and then ran his independent

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