In her closing "Clear the Air" commentary on the November 4 Martin Bashir program, substitute host and longtime Florida resident Joy-Ann Reid rewrote the political history of Republican-turned-Democrat Charlie Crist, who announced today that he will run for the governorship in the 2014 election cycle.
Reid suggested that Florida Democrats should get over their suspicions about the turncoat and get behind Crist to better ensure that the governor's chair is flipped over to Democratic control. In doing so, however, Reid virtually threw liberal African-American and loyal Democrat Kendrick Meek under the bus:
On Friday, the CBS Early Show and NBC's Today avoided any discussion of the Democratic Party's racial insensitivity in trying to get black Florida senate candidate Kendrick Meek to drop out of the race. On ABC's Good Morning America, co-host George Stephanopoulos quoted Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele on that very issue.
All three network morning shows conducted interviews with Meek, but only Stephanopoulos asked if the candidate was offended by the notion that Democratic Party officials were trying to force him out: "Michael Steele put out a statement last night where he said, 'Even the conversations sent a chilling signal to all voters.' He went on to say, 'One can only imagine the response if Republican leadership tried to force out of the race in the 11th hour a qualified black candidate like Kendrick Meek.' Were you offended by these conversations?" Meek replied by implying Steele was playing the race card: "Let's put it this way, I mean, you know the reason why Michael Steele put out the statement and I'll just leave it at that."
Well, they did stop short of presenting him with a ceremonial seppuku sword . . .
But other than that, MSNBC's Daily Rundown duo of Chuck Todd and Savannah Guthrie did their best to convince Florida Dem Kendreck Meek to get out of the senatorial race to give Charlie Crist a shot against Marco Rubio.
Todd tried the cold-hard-numbers route, while Guthrie made an emotional appeal, literally asking Meek if he "can live" with himself if his continued candidacy resulted in the election of Rubio. View video here.
Yet nowhere in his 20-paragraph story did Balz delve into those poll numbers. Instead, Balz presented the Florida race as complete wild card that is unpredictable due to the three-way nature of the contest:
Gov. Charlie Crist is the man in the middle in Florida's high-stakes race for the Senate, a candidate without a party whose hopes of moving from Tallahassee to Washington depend on his ability to fend off a squeeze play from his Democratic and Republican rivals.
The three-way campaign for the Senate is the latest in a series of important races in Florida - including the 2000 recount that helped define red-blue divisions in America - but with dynamics new to the Sunshine State.
But a look at recent polling data available on RealClearPolitics.com seems to indicate Rubio went to bed on primary election night in good shape for the general election fight ahead.