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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

A new shadow attack group emerges



A new shadowy political group will debut this weekend, debuting attack ads titled "Fraud" that take aim at GOP candidate Rick Scott.

The group, Florida First Initiative, purchased $616,282 in television ads that will air Saturday through Wednesday, June 16 --  two days before the state election filing deadline.

The group -- which has connections to GOP rival Bill McCollum's campaign -- is a 527 that registered in Florida in March and lists a registered agent at Ken Cleary and the email address of Alachua County GOP Chairman Stafford Jones

Jones hung up on a reporter who contacted him Friday and McCollum's campaign said they aren't affiliated with the group. McCollum's TV buyer purchased the TV time for Florida First and did the same for a different political group, Alliance for America's Future, which previously spent $1.9 million to air attack ads against Scott.

The latest figures also show Scott spent $14 million from his own pocket on his campaign's ads.

[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 10:42am]


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