Amid mounting bitterness between the independent governor and Republican legislators, a special session prompted by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill will open Tuesday. But rather than focus on a referendum to ban offshore drilling in the Florida Constitution, as the governor wants, the gathering is likely to be a gripe session with most of the rhetoric aimed not at BP or the oil industry, but at Crist himself.
``I think it's completely unnecessary,'' said Rep. Matt Hudson, R-Naples, in a view expressed by others. ``There's absolutely no reason we have to go and create a law for something that's already unlawful.''
Crist might not say so publicly, but that's just fine with him. He wants to use Tallahassee politicians as a foil, and lawmakers appear to be playing into his hands. Crist, who quit the GOP and launched an independent run for the U.S. Senate, is eager to condemn legislative inaction as more proof that partisan politics is a dismal failure.
``They put the interests of special interests or their party ideology ahead of what's right for the people,'' Crist said. ``They've lost their way. They've completely lost their way, and the people know it. And if they go down this path, they'll demonstrate it in regrettable glory.''