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Ex-Republican Crist knocks Romney-Ryan at Dem convention

Ex-Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, perhaps laying the groundwork for a run at his old job, portrayed himself as a recovering Republican on Thursday during a brief address before the Democratic convention – as he slammed the current GOP and its standard-bearers.

Crist said Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan “just aren’t up to the task.”

The address completed Crist’s turn on his old party. Crist shed his GOP membership to run as an independent for Senate in 2010, but lost to Republican Marco Rubio – who spoke at the GOP convention in Tampa last week.

Taking the stage in Charlotte on Thursday, Crist said: “I didn’t leave the Republican Party. It left me.”

Crist claimed Republicans now are “allergic to the very idea of compromise” and said “Ronald Reagan would not have stood for that.”

Last week, Crist endorsed President Obama in an op-ed in a Florida newspaper. Republicans panned the op-ed as a political move by Crist, amid speculation that he's gearing up to run against GOP Gov. Rick Scott in 2014.

Crist wasn’t the only party cross-over making a splash at the conventions. Former Democratic Alabama Rep. Artur Davis, who has changed his affiliation to Republican, spoke at the Republicans’ convention last week.