The Associated Press projects that GOP Gov. Rick Scott of Florida has won a second term, fending off a challenge from former Gov. Charlie Crist, a Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat.
Scott, a Tea Party favorite elected in the GOP wave of 2010, was a prime Democratic target, and Crist's entry into the race was a major Democratic coup. But after a nasty and expensive campaign, both men wound up with high unfavorable ratings.
Crist's narrow loss may spell the end of his political career. Elected Florida governor as a Republican in 2006, he left the GOP during his 2010 U.S. Senate campaign, when Tea Partyer Marco Rubio was poised to defeat him in the GOP primary. Running as an independent, Crist lost the election to Rubio by double digits.