Muckraker: Grist on Politics

Over on The Wall Street Journal‘s Environmental Capitol blog, Keith Johnson raises the question of whether Charlie Crist’s $1.75 billion deal to buy 300 square miles of the Everglades from U.S. Sugar Corp. was timed to keep his chance at the VP spot alive, as some Floridians have suggested.

Last week Grist noted that Crist’s enviro cred may be at stake now that he’s backed John McCain’s call for off-shore drilling. Tuesday’s announcement of the deal for the Everglades has been heralded as possibly the biggest environmental restoration in the history of the United States, which might restore some of the guv’s reputation in the enviro world.

But Johnson also raises another good question — will that help him in the world of Republican presidential politics?

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[E]ven if the Everglades deal promises to boost Gov. Crist’s standing at home, it’s not clear that burnishing his environmental credentials would make him more attractive nationwide for the Republican ticket in the fall, when Sen. McCain’s aggressive approach to climate change and other environmental issues has already alienated lots of hardcore Republicans, like the WSJ edit page.