The Tampa Bay Times reports that Charlie Crist, former Republican governor of Florida, “signed papers changing his party from independent to Democrat.”

The Times described the move as “highly anticipated,” and Crist certainly chose a “media” moment to make the change, on Friday evening.

He did so during a Christmas reception at the White House, where President Barack Obama greeted the news with a fist bump for the man who had a higher profile campaigning for Obama’s re-election this year than any Florida Democrat.

In 2010, Crist “registered with no party affiliation,” and since then “has been steadily inching toward the Democratic Party, including working for Obama’s re-election, and “earning a prominent speaking slot during the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.”

The next “highly anticipated” move: Crist will announce his run for Democratic candidate for governor.

(Charlie Crist via Charlie Crist FB)