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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Latvala likes Scott's slow pace on lieutenant governor search



Republican state Sen. Jack Latvala of Clearwater says Gov. Rick Scott is wisely proceeding very slowly in his search for a new lieutenant governor. "I fully support the cautious approach he's taking to fill the job," Latvala said. "I have no second thoughts and am not second-guessing him on the way he's doing it."

At public events in Orlando and Tampa Wednesday, reporters again pressed Scott on the search for a new No. 2, but he provided no new details. The $130,000-a-year job has been vacant since Jennifer Carroll resigned on March 12 and the office on the state Capitol's plaza level sits dark and empty. 

"We're still working on it," Scott told the Times/Herald of the LG search. "I want somebody that's going to help me fulfill my agenda. That's what I want. I want somebody that's going to help me focus on how we get more jobs here, and how do we constantly improve education, because they're completely intertwined. That's the attribute."

Latvala said he believes Scott and his chief of staff, Adam Hollingsworth, are seeking someone who'll be more of a team member than a ticket-balancer going into his 2014 re-election campaign. Latvala's name is one of many that has popped up in the endless guessing game -- but he threw cold water on that notion Thursday and appears to love his current job as a senator.

"I intend to be Senate president," said Latvala, who's seeking the presidency in 2016. "It isn't something I would give a bit of thought to."

On Scott's performance, Latvala said: "I 'm a great supporter of the governor. I'm a great admirer of his. I really like the guy personally and I think he's getting better every day."

[Last modified: Thursday, September 19, 2013 1:54pm]


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