Sen. Marco Rubio called it "reckless and irresponsible": the public release of a Senate committee report detailing past examples of alleged torture by the CIA. Rubio argued it could endanger lives of Americans overseas, incite violence and create problems for our allies.
"The one-sided report that will be released by Democrats on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence cost U.S. taxpayers over $40 million dollars to produce, and its authors never interviewed a single CIA official," Rubio wrote in a statement Dec. 8, the day before the report was released....
12/07/14 State Roundup
Failing test scores aren't the only problem that has caused the military to reject applicants, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush says. Another problem is, well, more colorful: tattoos.
While talking about his push to improve public education at a Wall Street Journal CEO Council event last week, Bush pointed to problems the military has in finding qualified applicants.
Bush mentioned a video in which a military official talked about the challenge:...
In a high-profile summit on education last week, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said we shouldn't worry so much about students' self-esteem when it comes to setting grades.
"This morning, over 213 million Chinese students went to school and nobody debated whether academic expectations should be lowered in order to protect their students' self-esteem," he said Thursday at the National Summit on Education Reform. "Yet in Orange County, Fla., last week I read that debate actually did occur at a School Board meeting. The School Board voted to make it impossible for a student to receive a grade below 50. You get 50 out of 100 just for showing up and signing your name. This was done — and I quote here from a local official — 'so that the students do not lose all hope.' "...
The gloves came off in Jacksonville on Tuesday night, as the third and final gubernatorial debate between Rick Scott and Charlie Crist was marked by insults, arguments and accusations.
The governor and the former governor took each other to task over their respective records, charging each other with mud-slinging and twisting the facts.
CNN moderator Jake Tapper brought up topics like Ebola, executions and Florida State football, but the candidates managed to go back to familiar talking points several times. Both Scott and Crist still talked at length about immigration, the cost of living and believe it or not, jobs....
10/16/14 State Roundup
TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott's sudden absence at the start of a statewide TV debate reshaped the governor's race Thursday as event sponsors accused Charlie Crist of breaking the rules and Scott's side fretted over whether he damaged his re-election prospects.
At the center of the storm was a $20 fan that viewers couldn't see, quietly whirring near Crist's feet as he stood alone on stage Wednesday night at Broward College in Davie....
Rick Scott and Charlie Crist fought over who was the biggest fan of the truth Wednesday night, at the second debate of the governor’s race.
At the onset of the Oct. 15 debate, we thought we might not have anything to fact-check except whether the debate rules allowed candidates to have fans at their podium. Republican Gov. Scott initially didn’t take the stage at Broward College in Davie because challenger former Gov. Crist had a small podium fan. Florida’s political junkies know that Crist is famous for insisting on a fan at all his public events....
10/12/14 State Roundup
In his quest for the women's vote, Democrat Charlie Crist continues to attack Republican Gov. Rick Scott's record on abortion.
"After it happened, Rick Scott threw a party back at the mansion. What was he celebrating?" says a TV ad. "This: with a stroke of a pen, Scott passed some of the most extreme antichoice laws in the country. Laws requiring mandatory ultrasounds and restricting access to abortion, even in cases of rape or incest."...
09/07/14 State Roundup
The Republican Party of Florida attacked former Gov. Charlie Crist in a TV ad alleging that he let Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein pick judicial appointments in exchange for campaign donations.
Crist's campaign fired back with its own ad Aug. 18 that included a slew of attacks on Gov. Rick Scott, including this one:
"Now he's teamed up with a felon convicted of running a Ponzi scheme to smear Charlie Crist with false attacks."...
09/06/14 State Roundup
Gov. Rick Scott has had nearly four years to enact the agenda he promised as a candidate back in 2010: a relentless focus on jobs, a downsizing of government and a hard line on illegal immigration.
PolitiFact Florida has tracked 57 of his campaign promises over four years and found a mixed report. Scott is certainly trying on job creation. He has succeeded in shrinking government. But he has largely reversed himself on immigration. ...
09/06/14 State Roundup
As Republican Gov. Rick Scott and Democrat Charlie Crist campaign around the state largely attacking each other, they have also made dozens of promises to voters with nearly two months to go before Election Day.
Whichever candidate wins, PolitiFact Florida will track their promises starting in 2015. If Scott wins re-election, we will add his new promises to our Scott-O-Meter. If Crist wins, we'll launch a new meter. (PolitiFact Florida also tracks the promises of the mayors of Tampa and St. Petersburg. PolitiFact tracks the promises of President Barack Obama.)...
09/01/14 State Roundup
NextGen Climate, a deep-pocketed, proenvironmental group, has unleashed another attack on Gov. Rick Scott as it relates to a drilling project that the state ultimately shut down.
"The Collier family, owners of the company that leased their land for oil exploration to the drillers that threatened drinking water for 7 million Floridians," stated the narrator in the TV ad. "Rick Scott took $200,000 from them and now he is trying to hide from it. Sound familiar?"...
Florida's famous Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein now lives in a federal prison, but Republicans hope that he can help smear the reputation of former Gov. Charlie Crist. A TV ad from the Republican Party of Florida says Rothstein "gave hundreds of thousands of campaign cash to control Crist's appointments of key state judges." PolitiFact Florida took a deep dive into the evidence, reviewing all the media reports on the case and conducting new interviews of people who had dealings with Rothstein on judicial appointments. Our rating: Half True. Read the full report....
Campaign ads are polluting this year's gubernatorial campaign, making plenty of harsh attacks about both Gov. Rick Scott and his leading Democratic challenger, Charlie Crist.
PolitiFact Florida has fact-checked two ads from a political action committee called NextGen, funded by billionaire climate activist Tom Steyer. The ads target Scott as cozy with Florida polluters.
Duke Energy ad...
08/17/14 State Roundup
A plan to build a passenger rail service connecting Miami and Orlando has fueled attacks in this year's race for governor.
The project has faced opposition from some residents on the Treasure Coast, who fear noise and other impacts. And as he campaigns for re-election, Gov. Rick Scott has faced heat for the role of his chief of staff, Adam Hollingsworth, who previously worked for All Aboard's parent company....
08/05/14 State Roundup
Charlie Crist unveiled his "Fair Shot Florida" plan to grow middle-class jobs on Tuesday in Fort Lauderdale, repeating his familiar criticisms of Gov. Rick Scott for rejecting billions of federal dollars for high-speed rail expansion and for the state's failure to expand Medicaid.
Expanding Medicaid "will create as many as 120,000 new high-quality jobs," he said. PolitiFact rated Crist's earlier claim that the expansion would create 63,000 jobs as Half True. The 63,000 figure comes from a White House study chastising states such as Florida for failing to expand Medicaid. The Florida Hospital Association's most recent analysis in 2013 predicts 120,000 jobs created within a decade; the association supports expansion. Meanwhile, Moody's predicted between 10,000 and 30,000 jobs....