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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

PolitiFact Florida checks out Gov. Rick Scott's claims on FCAT, unemployment



Gov. Rick Scott is clearly proud of two things lately: Florida's FCAT phase-out and its declining unemployment rate.

But Scott has erred in talking about these topics, PolitiFact Florida found.

In a TV ad sponsored by the Republican Party of Florida, Scott says, "I've listened to the frustrations parents and teachers have with the FCAT. Next year we begin improving our testing system. No more teaching to the test."

Is the state's move from FCAT to a new testing system a product of Scott listening to angry parents and teachers? No. Change was already coming. Read the fact-check and ruling here.

Scott often talks up the state's significant unemployment rate drop since he took office. Its decline since December 2010 is the nation's biggest.

"We have every reason to brag about what’s going on in our state," he said last week at an Enterprise Florida board meeting. "If you look at the fastest drop in unemployment, it’s down 2.3 (percentage points) in the last 20 months."

Scott's rosy statistic ignores the biggest factor behind the lowered unemployment rate: a labor force downsized by the exit of discouraged workers. That's not a positive economic indicator, experts say. Read our fact-check and ruling here

Other recent fact-checks include Mitt Romney on Florida's housing woes, actor Kal Penn on the growth of Pell Grants under Obama, John Kerry on the US-Israel relationship under Obama, and President Barack Obama on Medicare's guaranteed benefits.


[Last modified: Monday, September 17, 2012 3:42pm]


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