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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Scott survives first Florida newspaper editorial board meeting



  Photo: The Tallahassee Democrat.
Gov. Rick Scott sat down this morning with the Tallahassee Democrat editorial board and lived to tell about it.

Scott said the editorial board meeting was his first since 1994 when he was CEO of Columbia/HCA and he sat down with the Louisville Courier-Journal. "I should have taken doughnuts, I didn't think about that. They would have been nicer," Scott said when asked about the meeting today. "But no, it went fine."

During the hour-long interview (watch the video here), Scott said the Panhandle could be having its best tourist season ever and that many of the new jobs in Florida are in the hospitality and health care industries.

Scott ignored editorial boards during the campaign and didn't agree to interviews until after he brought in Steve MacNamara as chief of staff. Scott attended the meeting today with deputy communications director Amy Graham and passed out this list of accomplishments.

Asked whether he could take credit for the state's declining unemployment, Scott said it was a "legitimate question." He then pointed to the trend of rising unemployment in the state before he took over. "Maybe I'm the luckiest guy in the state," Scott said. "But it was up to 12 percent and immediately after I came in it came down."

Scott didn't mention the state's own forecasts showed jobs returning to Florida this year, but he did acknowledge job creation can't be attributed to just "one thing." "I think there is a different attitude in the state now," Scott said. "Business people believe there is a responsive government."

[Last modified: Wednesday, August 10, 2011 11:11am]


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