Republican donors sue Crist over campaign contributions

A pair of Republicans who contributed to Florida Gov. Charlie Crist's (I) campaign for Senate have filed a lawsuit demanding that those donations be returned.

The class action suit seeks refunds for all of Crist's GOP donors, arguing that not reimbursing Republican donors now that the governor has left the party and is running against a Republican actually violates state law.

The man leading the legal fight is Florida state Rep. Tom Grady, a former regional chairman of Crist's Senate campaign.

The Naples Daily News reports that the lawsuit is seeking an injunction that would prevent the Crist campaign from spending the money from Republican donors:

Grady said he’s arguing the case under state laws: unjust enrichment, breach of contract, and breach of covenants of good faith and fair dealing.

“I believe you cannot do what he did without some obligation for returning their money,” Grady said, noting politicians in similar situations historically have returned contributions, including Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, who switched from Republican to Democrat last year.

“He actually did offer to give money back to people and no lawsuit was filed,” Grady said of Specter returning $850,000 to 900 people who requested refunds.

“I have waited for quite some time and it’s clear that’s not going to happen,” Grady said of Crist. “He was pretty blunt in saying he was not going to refund the money, but as you know, the governor changes his mind.”

No response yet from the Crist campaign.