Now that Rick Scott has finished off the dirty work of the Republicans in the legislature either by signature or veto, and is ignoring his other duties like picking a Lieutenant Governor, he's now getting busy with his reelection campaign.
Fresh from handing out more Great Floridian Awards than most governors before him, with two of the most recent going to....wait for it...... campaign donors with the biggest checkbooks in Florida, he began "telling his story" to potential voters this weekend. As if they didn't already read the writing on the wall during the past three years.
Yes, Scott is all about messaging. As long as people listen to what he says rather than watching what he does, he thinks people will be misguided enough to vote for him a second time, so over the weekend he ventured to North Florida, where voters are more inclined to vote GOP anyway and therefore, likely a captive audience.
Rick Scott, preaching to the choir:
"We're going to have another race," Scott said. "These elections have consequences. We have to show up. We have to tell our story ... If we don't tell our story, then it's our fault if everybody doesn't vote our way. Everybody should be a Republican."
This may be the first time ever that I've agreed with something Scott said, but yes, the 2010 election of Rick Scott certainly had consequences, and those voters were looking right at him over the weekend. Just trust him when he says to those more inclined to vote against their own best interests "everybody should be a Republican." If they don't understand why, well old Rick has a story to tell them, and it's quite a work of fiction.
Not that everyone is buying it:
Scott's chief of staff, Adam Hollingsworth, tagged along on the Sunday campaign swing, which included a brief stop at Holmes Correctional Institution in Bonifay.
Jackson County is very dependent on state government for employment, and some at the Circle Grill said Scott's paring of the work force and his support for privatization in the prison system will require some explaining on the campaign trail.
"There's some mixed emotions," said civic activist Karen Fader. "The privatization is a real issue with state workers. They don't want to go through that re-application process." (Scott backed the complete privatization of all prison health care in the state).
Yes, and they don't like getting fired by the "Jobs Governor" either, but who's counting?
Speaking of prison privatization, which doesn't just kill jobs, Rick Scott recently signed a bill into law that makes executions faster while cutting the time it takes for a prisoner to present an appeal, which leads to the next chapter in Rick Scott's Warm And Fuzzy Florida Fairy Tales.
His chosen narrator for this one was Florida House Rep. Matt Gaetz. He's the charming Republican who had this to say about that fast-track execution bill:
“Only God can judge. But we can sure set up the meeting.”
Isn't he adorable? Still not convinced? Well, here's more:
"We all need a governor who's pro-life," Matt Gaetz told the crowd. "We need a governor who believes in the Second Amendment and our right to hear arms, and this governor has been firm on those issues."
Yes, because nothing says you're pro-life more than making sure that everyone in the state has easy access to guns and the ability to get their hands on as many as they so desire, while also making sure you can execute prisoners at lightning speed regardless if they've had adequate time for due process in court.
Just which part of the term "pro-life" don't you understand?
Rick Scott's little experiment in fiction is just getting warmed up. Stay tuned for future chapters, where he'll explain how he's all about transparency, that he wants everyone to be able to vote, that handing out bonuses to those who can approve environmental permits faster than you can say "benzene" or "lower TMDL standards", that Medicaid expansion is a fantastic idea, that big campaign donations have nothing to do with bills getting passed, or getting you into a position to help write them, that he's never, EVER heard of the Koch brothers, and that if it weren't for that pesky blind trust of his, he would show you he's really not making a profit as the CEO of Florida, Inc.
In other words, it's going to be a long, nauseating campaign season...literally.