Davis on Crist new take on Insurance bill by Mitch E. Perry10/26/06
Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jim Davis and other Democrats slammed Charlie Crist today for comments heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s made in the past 2 days, critical of the Property Insurance bill passed by the Republican dominated legislature in Tallahassee 5 months ago.
Yesterday the Attorney General said that he Ã¢â‚¬ËœprobablyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ would have vetoed that bill if he was already governor. The main provisions of the bill provided for over a $700 million bailout to Citizens Insurer, the state run insurer of last resort, and allocated $250 million for homeowners to upgrade their properties.
But in a conference call set up by the Davis team, Miami Beach Democrat Dan Gelber, the incoming House Minority Leader, called CristÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s comments Ã¢â‚¬Ëœdisengenous, Ã¢â‚¬Ëœsaying if Crist really felt that way about the bill he should have said something at the time (roll tape#1 o.q.Ã¢â‚¬?need to considerÃ¢â‚¬?)
Bill Newton is the Executive Director for FCAN, the Florida Consumer Action Network. He says if Charlie Crist didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t think the bill that the legislature passed on the last day of the session last May wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t good for homeowners, he should have said something at the time (roll tape#2 o.q.Ã¢â‚¬? on this issueÃ¢â‚¬?)
And FCANÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Bill Newton says that in his role as the stateÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s top consumer advocate, the Attorney General was silent when insurance companies then kept on hurting property owners (roll tape#3 o.q.Ã¢â‚¬?Charlie then eitherÃ¢â‚¬?)
St. Petersburg Times reporter Steve Bosquet was on the conference call. He read aloud what he said was a rough transcript of Crist being asked on Thursday about the issue (roll tape#4 o.q.Ã¢â‚¬?IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m not a grandstanderÃ¢â‚¬?)
Upon hearing that exchange, House Democrat Dan Gelbar said that he was Ã¢â‚¬ËœflusteredÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ (roll tape#5 o.q.Ã¢â‚¬?itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s crazyÃ¢â‚¬?)
CristÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s opponent, Jim Davis, simply had this to say about his Republican opponentÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s seemingly new found distaste for the Property Insurance bill supported by Governor Bush, CEO Tom Gallagher, and the majority of Republicans in Tallahassee (roll tape#6 o.q.Ã¢â‚¬?were on the eve of an electionÃ¢â‚¬?)
Meanwhile, the Florida Retail Federation endorsed Charlie Crist for Governor Today, saying Jim Davis would be bad for FloridaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s economic growth. Davis responded by saying that he agreed that if he won, it would be bad news indeed for FloridaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s lobbyists in Tallahassee.