The day after suggesting that Democratic primary voters in Florida should vote for turncoat Charlie Crist to better ensure the chances of taking back the governor's mansion, MSNBC substitute host Joy-Ann Reid conducted a short and rather tense interview with Nan Rich, a former state senate minority leader. You may recall that Reid suggested yesterday it would be "toxic" for Sunshine State Democrats to let a "purity test" scuttle Crist's nomination and with it liberals' best chances to take the governor's mansion.
Reid was "pressed for time" to squeeze the interview into Tuesday's tightly-programmed Martin Bashir program, but even allowing for that, it seemed to me that Reid was annoyed that Rich was gumming up the works and preventing a coronation for Crist, who naturally would have the backing of President Obama. Judge for yourself by reading an excerpt of the transcript and/or by listening to the MP3 audio of the segment:
JOY-ANN REID: Is it enough for you to argue that Charlie Crist is basically a Johnny-come-lately Democrat? Do you have to offer a more substantive critique of him as a candidate beyond that?
REID: But, I'm sorry to interrupt you. I didn't mean to interrupt you. Obviously you do have to tell people your story but at the moment, because he's the one with the name ID, he's the one who's considered the frontrunner, but don't you have to take Crist down, don't you have to offer a substantive critique of why he can't be the nominee?
REID: Okay, well, let's talk about some of those positions. I know you're getting a lot of support from women. Are there issues around women's health, around abortion, around gay adoption, for instance. Give us some of these substantive issues you think should trouble Democratic voters?
REID: Okay. We're very pressed for time. So I do want to ask you one more question. There is the issue of fundraising. Obviously, Governor Crist is going to raise a lot of money, you're going to have to try to raise a lot to counter him. There was a story that was in the Miami Herald that talked about the potential for Rick Scott backers to actually put money into your campaign. Is that something you would accept? Would you be willing to take money from people who really back Rick Scott but who want to derail Charlie Crist by backing you?
NAN RICH, Democratic candidate for Florida governor: I will be very pleased to accept money from people who wish to push my campaign--
REID: Even if they're Rick Scott backers who are really making mischief?
RICH: --and what they do beyond the primary will be another election. But the first election has to be the primary election, and I have to be made the nominee before I can get to the general election.
RICH: I don't, I don't really know that this will happen. But as I mentioned before, I have a two-tiered strategy. One of course is fundraising, you must have the resources. But you also, I believe, have to have the grassroots support. And that's what I've been doing. I have an incredible network of volunteers, dedicated people around the state of Florida, who want to see a change, and want to see a new direction and don't want to see the same old ideas and plans and attacks on our public education system. And that's why I am running for this position.
REID: Okay, thank you very much. I'm sorry we are pressed for time. But, thank you very much, and best of luck to you, Nan Rich.