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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Weatherford calls Florida vote snafus 'embarrassing' but when it comes to election he's 'over it'

9

November

Incoming House Speaker Will Weatherford appeared on conservative talk radio's WFLA in Tallahassee Friday morning as host Preston Scott played the soundtrack to the movie "The Last of the Mohicans." 

"It's a little bit melodramatic don't you think,'' Weatherford said with a laugh.

Scott said "no load on you" but joked that he considered Weatherford, a Wesley Chapel Republican, "one of the last of the Mohicans."

Weatherford was asked how he felt on election night.

"I was going through the stages of grief,'' he said, before he went to bed at 3 a.m.

Scott said his listeners are both heartbroken and angry but Weatherford said: "I'm over it. The American people have spoken. Whether you like what they had to say or not in this race, whether you like the fact that President Obama is going to be the president of the United States for the next four years or not, he's going to be our president.

 

"Anyone who wishes for him to not succeed at this point is betting against America and they're wishing against the success of America.

"What we need is a Congress and a president who, for five seconds can just put down the partisanship and try to address some of the real fiscal challenges that are faces this country. I just hope that they're able to do it...If there was a moment for bipartisanship....it's right now.

"There's an old saying that says you don't whine when you lose and you don't brag when you win."

Scott said he is not optimistic because he has "no evidence the GOP has learned lessons in the five or six years and we have no evidence that Democrats won't spike the football because, in spite of what they say, that's all they do."

He added: "There's a brutal truth out there and that is that people ignored the obvious out there because they were getting. These are people that like those people getting and that is a seismic shift in our culture."

Weatherford reponded: "The biggest challenge is, the size of the people who are getting are growing. So the 47 percent debate that took place because of the comments that he made at a fundraiser, what he said didn't come out the way he meant it to, but here's a simple way of saying it. When there are more people in the wagon than pulling the wagon, the wagon moves very slow, if at all. You've got to have people out there pulling. And this country, unfortunately, is getting to a place where there are more people sitting inside the wagon enjoying the ride than there are people out there pulling.

"We've got to convince people that yeah, pulling the wagon is hard work and may need an education and other things but there's a sense of freedom and sense of self-destination that comes with pulling a wagon.

"I don't want to sound overly optimistic because I don't have any evidence either that this is happening but it has to happen. We are spending $1 trillion more per year than we have."

Weatherford said it is the job of the state to "set our own destiny."  

Weatherford said he knew the odds were against the GOP that it would retain the super-majority in the House. "What this means is we still have to work with our friends across the aisle. We still have 76. The burden falls on us to govern."

He noted that in Florida "one of every two babies born in the state are born to government assistance." He said one of the focuses will be ethics and campaign finance reform, another will be the "rudderless" higher education system that is not competitive.

"I'm concerned about the fact that we don't seem to be able to count votes in the state of Florida,'' he added.

When you turn on the TV and see all the states read or blue and we're yellow, "we should all be a little embarrassed by that."

[Last modified: Friday, November 9, 2012 8:27am]

    

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