Allegations Charlie Crist appointed George LeMieux to Senate to cover gay rumors

8:59 AM, Jun 12, 2012   |    comments
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Tallahassee, Florida -- Scathing allegations came out on Friday about former Governor Charlie Crist, claiming he paid off men to hide that he is gay.

It all surrounded criminal charges against former state GOP Chair Jim Greer.

Crist quickly responded, calling the allegations "a bunch of delusional lies."

Now those allegations are seeping into the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate candidate.

George LeMieux was appointed by then-Governor Crist to fill the term of Mel Martinez, who resigned. LeMieux is now being accused of extorting Crist to get that appointment.

"I don't know who those people are," LeMieux said about the two men who were allegedly paid to leave the state in order to hide a relationship with Crist. 

LeMieux, who is currently running to keep the Senate seat he was appointed to, denies he had any involvement and says it isn't true.

The allegations surfaced last week, when the Attorney General's Office released documents surrounding the criminal trial of former state GOP Chair Jim Greer.

LeMieux says, "People in desperate situations say desperate things."

But Greer says, "I'm going to show the public that these people who are running for higher public office are liars, are cheats and will do anything to get elected to that higher public office."

Greer says he and Crist's former chief of staff, Eric Eikenberg, were dispatched to tell LeMieux he wasn't going to be appointed to the Senate seat. 

According to Greer, LeMieux responded by saying, "After all I did for him, we'll see."

LeMieux denies making the remark, telling 10 News, "That's not true and I think Governor Crist has said that too."

LeMieux cannot deny, however, that he was not the governor's first choice; at the time LeMieux couldn't even get an interview for the Senate seat.

We asked LeMieux if he was told he wasn't going to get it, and he replied, "I had Greer tell me at that point they were looking at other folks."

Greer says LeMieux then had an unscheduled meeting with the governor and, 20 minutes later, he got a call saying LeMieux was the Senate choice.

Greer thinks LeMieux pressured Crist. However, LeMieux simply expains, "I asked for an interview. I got an interview. And that's how it happened."

Representative Connie Mack, who is running for the Senate nomination against LeMieux, doesn't believe it. He had his chief counsel write a letter to the Justice Department in response to the suggestion that LeMieux threatened to disclose harmful information -- presumably about the two men paid to leave the state -- to earn the Senate appointment.

While both Crist and LeMieux insist nothing was improper about the appointment, testimony at Greer's upcoming criminal trial could shed light on what is fact or fiction.

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