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Another Florida Republican jumps ship

Given RNC's efforts to boost its minority outreach, it's not at all helpful when folks like Ana Rivas Logan and Pablo Pantoja become Democrats.
Florida Independent Senate candidate, Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, gestures toward passing motorists, Tuesday, November 2, 2010, in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Former state Rep. Ana Rivas Logan is leaving the Republican Party, she announced Monday. She plans to register as a Democrat, she said. "The GOP of today is not the party I joined," said Rivas Logan, who also served on the Miami-Dade School Board. "It's not the party of my parents. It's a party that has been radicalized and held hostage by a group of extremists."

In an interview with the Tampa Bay Times, Rivas Logan described the Republican Party as "a party that attacks women and minorities -- and one that asked me, and my former Hispanic Republican colleagues in the Florida legislature, to turn on their own people by supporting extreme anti-immigrant policies."
And if this sounds vaguely familiar, there's a good reason. Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist recently made one of the more notable switches in recent memory, not only becoming a Democrat, but positioning himself for another statewide campaign with his new party, making similar remarks about the state GOP.
What's more, note that Rivas Logan's story is not dissimilar to that of Pablo Pantoja, who, up until last spring, served as the state director of Florida Hispanic Outreach for the Republican National Committee.
Then he switched, too.
Pantoja said last May, after becoming a Democrat and making a contribution to the ACLU, "It doesn't take much to see the culture of intolerance surrounding the Republican Party today."
Obviously, it'd be a mistake to extrapolate too much from two individuals changing their party affiliation, but given that the RNC is trying to boost its minority outreach efforts, it's not at all helpful when folks like Rivas Logan and Pantoja make a splash by crossing the aisle.