Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Gov. Rick Scott's video touts economic growth, lower jobless rate

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan advised Scott.

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan advised Scott.

Gov. Rick Scott unveiled a high-quality campaign video on his Facebook page Monday called "first time." (Nope, not like Lena Dunham cheekily describing her first time voting for Barack Obama.)

"This is the first time in five years that our unemployment rate has been below the national average," Scott says, "but we're not stopping there."

In the ad, Scott repeats talking points about the poor shape of the economy "in the four years before I became governor" (listening, Charlie Crist?), compared to the state's private-sector growth and declining unemployment rate since he took office.

The scene: A March 18 news conference at Mitsubishi Power Systems in Orlando, where Scott is surrounded by a crew of approving employees in T-shirts and safety goggles as he talks about jobs gains. The unnamed facility manager says "it's unbelievable" how much better shape the state is in these days, and that he has hired 150 new employees. Another man says, "The governor really gets it."

Gone is Scott's 2010 mantra, "Let's get to work." Scott's new slogan is "It's working." The video is hosted at and paid for by his political committee, Let's Get to Work.

Focus on teacher pay, tax cut

Gov. Scott still isn't saying whether he'll support legislation banning Internet sweepstakes cafes in Florida.

Speaking to the Tampa Bay Times editorial board Monday afternoon, Scott said he is waiting to see what the Legislature does before taking a position.

Scott, who took questions for an hour, remained hyper-focused on his two priorities: giving public school teachers a $2,500 pay raise and cutting a sales tax for manufacturers. He also sounded less partisan, talking up relationships with President Obama's Cabinet, including Education Secretary Arne Duncan. "Arne," as Scott referred to him, called to recommend Tony Bennett as Scott's new education commissioner. Other notes:

Scott made a point to single out what a great job Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, a Democrat, is doing. Twice. He didn't mention Republican St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster.

On Friday's big Florida vs. Florida Gulf Coast basketball game: "I'd like both those teams to win."

On gay marriage: Scott wouldn't say if he supported a 2008 Florida constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, and wouldn't say if he supports the ban now. "It's in the Constitution."

Senate plans for Dozier project

The Florida Senate's proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year includes $200,000 to help University of South Florida researchers identify gravesites on the grounds of the Dozier School for Boys in Marianna.

"This funding is crucial to helping USF analyze the cemetery at the former school," Sen. Kelli Stargel, R-Lakeland, said in a news release.

The Florida House also said it will fully fund USF's request, which was for $190,000. And U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson has identified a federal grant program that could also assist with the Dozier investigation.

The federal program, run by the Department of Justice, allocates up to $3 million to universities and nonprofits that wish to exhume bodies and identify missing people using DNA technology.

Greer to be sentenced today

Former Republican Party of Florida chairman Jim Greer will be sentenced Wednesday in Orlando after pleading guilty last month to theft and money laundering charges that could put him behind bars for 3 ½ years.

Times staff writers Aaron Sharockman and Tia Mitchell contributed.

Gov. Rick Scott's video touts economic growth, lower jobless rate 03/26/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 26, 2013 10:57pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Gov. Rick Scott could soon be the all-time king of line-item veto


    2016: $256,144,027

    2015: $461,387,164

    2014: $68,850,121

    2013: $367,950,394

    2012: $142,752,177

    2011: $615,347,550

    Only once has Scott used the line-item veto sparingly. That was in 2014, the year he ran for re-election, when he removed a paltry $69 million from the budget.

    Gov. Rick Scott waves a veto pen at The Villages in 2011.
  2. Rays morning after: An up-and down day for Jose De Leon


    Rays RHP Jose De Leon had a busy Monday - getting called up to join the Rays for the first time and making his way from Pawtucket, R.I., to Boston and the flying to Texas, working 2 2/3 eventful innings to get the W in the 10-8 victory over the Rangers, and then getting optioned back to Triple-A.

    Jose De Leon follows through in the sixth inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas, on May 29, 2017.
  3. Resignation of communications director Dubke could signal more changes within White House staff


    WASHINGTON — Mike Dubke has resigned as White House communications director, a senior administration official confirmed Tuesday, in the first of what could be a series of changes to President Trump's senior staff amid the growing Russia scandal.

    President Donald Trump speaks at the Memorial Amphitheater in Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Monday, May 29, 2017, during a Memorial Day ceremony. [Associated Press]
  4. Trump pays somber tribute to fallen troops on Memorial Day


    ARLINGTON, Va. — President Donald Trump expressed the nation's "boundless" gratitude for the ultimate sacrifice paid by Americans defending the United States, dedicating his first Memorial Day address as commander in chief to a top Cabinet secretary and two other families who lost loved ones.

    Brittany Jacobs, left, watches as her 6-year-old son Christian Jacobs meets President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery, Monday, May 29, 2017, in Arlington, Va. Jacobs father, Marine Sgt. Christopher Jacobs, was killed in 2011. [Associated Press]
  5. Florida education news: Budgets, discipline, charter schools and more


    BUDGETING: Florida school district officials keep a close eye on their spending plans as they await word on the Legislature's budget. Gov. Rick Scott