Charlie Crist's official portrait was unveiled in Tallahassee Monday, but is the former governor's political career over? The former governor may still have a cause and constituency to run again.
In broad strokes and intricate detail, Florida's self-proclaimed 'people's governor' has come to life on canvas, a reminder to all who visit the capitol of Charlie Crist, the perpetual optimist, and the dark and turbulent times in which he governed.
But through it all, his personal story endured.
“I am the grandson of an immigrant who came here with nothing and I'm sure never imagined that his grandson, my father's father, Adam Cristodolous, his grandson would eventually be the 44th governor of Florida, excuse me, 45, but 44 is what I am, I guess.”
Crist has come a long way since his campaign in 2006.
After losing his independent bid for the U.S. Senate, he's returned to private life and private practice. But from backing a democratic congressional candidate to launching a high-profile campaign to ban oil drilling in state waters, there are signs he's not giving up on politics.
In fact, many insiders speculate he may well appear on the ballot again. As a candidate, Crist would have a unique advantage. Having run for statewide office five times, he's become a virtual household name in Florida, complete with his own politics, his own brand, even his own tie.
“We believe our beaches are sacred, that our state is sacred...”
And his own unique ability to fire up a crowd.
Democratic strategist Sean Pittman says Crist could gain real traction with the oil issue, and depending how Gov. Scott continues to lead the state, 2014 could provide the opportunity for a comeback.
“If he finds an area to use his popularity to do good, there may be a draft for Charlie Crist at some point,” Pittman said. “I mean, obviously, that's what somebody like Charlie Crist would hope for.”
But, in the political world, three-and-a-half years can be an eternity. So for now, you'll find him hanging out around the halls of power... even if he's no longer in power.
Aside from joining the personal injury firm "Morgan and Morgan", former Gov. Crist has also been named to the board of the 'Saint Joe Company', Florida's largest landowner.