Peter Hamby, "Crist controversy resurfaces in new Netflix film", CNN 1/21/2014:
These days, Crist is considered persona non grata within the GOP. From top party officials on down to grassroots conservative activists, he is seen as a self-interested flip-flopper who left his party when it suited him politically in 2010.
In Romney-world, the aversion to Crist dates back even earlier, to that January evening in 2008 when campaign officials said he broke his word.
“Dem or Republican, I’ll do whatever I can to bury that iguana,” said Will Ritter, a former Romney aide and GOP consultant. “For as long as I live. For free.”
My first thought here was that iguana is one of the many deprecatory words — often originally animal terms — that can be used quasi-anaphorically:
I'll never forgive that louse. The hatred and resentment will never leave me.
That bitch will never love you the way I did.
Can you please tell that silly goose to stop wasting my time with balderdash?
I spoke with David Jackson 3 weeks later and that snake promised I would have this thing for Christmas.
That weasel never gave a thought about anybody but himself.
But if so, it's the only anaphoric iguana I've ever seen.
Neither can I find any support for the theory that "bury the iguana" is some kind of figurative expression along the lines of "bury the hatchet" (= "make peace") or "drain the lizard" (= "urinate").
This leaves the theory that there's some specific connection between Charlie Crist and iguanas — maybe it was his childhood nickname?
Web search suggests a sneakier and more unpleasant reason for Will Ritter to have chosen that word — e.g. Bob Norman, "The Talk of the Green Iguana", Broward Palm Beach New Times 2/28/2008:
The rumors about Florida Gov. Charlie Crist and the Green Iguana just wouldn't go away.
The story goes that the Florida governor frequented the Green Iguana, a bar in Tampa, back in the early 1990s when he was just starting his political career. He was less careful back then, people say, and during his partying at the Green Iguana, he was openly gay.
When I got Rick Calderoni, the bar's well-known owner, on the phone, I expected him to stonewall me about it.
Calderoni, who is gay, confirmed that Crist came into his bar quite often and that the two of them became friends.
Getting to the point, I asked him if he knew Crist to be gay.
"Yes," he answered bluntly. "I just wish he would come out and admit it. That would be a great thing if he did."
So was Will Ritter trying to reference those rumors covertly? I'm not sure, but so far I don't see any other explanation.
Update — Dave Weigel checked with Ritter ("'Bury That Iguana': The Birth of a Trash-Talk Term", Slate 1/23/2014) and he says it was just another animal metaphor:
Ritter says no. "I'd never seen that piece, nor would I care either way," he tells me. To him, iguana meant "reptilian, creepy, heartless."
Case closed, unless Crist wants to appeal.