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Crist scores Obama inaugural tickets from White Hosue

4:45 PM, Jan 18, 2013   |    comments
ormer Florida governor Charlie Crist campaigned for President Obama and became a Democrat after the 2012 election. (Photo: Chris O'Meara, AP)
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Recently minted Democrat Charlie Crist and his wife have received tickets to President Obama's public inauguration ceremony, courtesy of the White House.

Crist was a Republican when he was governor of Florida, became an independent during his unsuccessful 2010 Senate race, and then formally joined Obama's political party in December -- a few months after speaking on the president's behalf at the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

The Palm Beach Postreports Crist and his wife, Carole, also accepted a "gracious" invitation to attend a White House reception Monday night. "I feel very comfortable and welcome," Crist is quoted as saying.

Crist has been in the Obama orbit since he said nice things about the president's economic stimulus package in 2009. A photo of the two men hugging at that event became fodder for Republicans in the 2010 Senate race.

Crist is thinking about running for old job and challenging Florida Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican whose popularity ratings are sagging, in the 2014 election. Crist leads Scott, 53%-39%, in a Public Policy Polling survey released earlier this week. The poll showed 52% of Democratic voters want Crist to be their nominee for governor.

Catalina Camia, USA TODAY

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