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SCOTT CAMP DEFENDS FINANCIALS

Gov. Rick Scott's campaign defended his financial disclosures as fully transparent Tuesday, but details of his investments - or when he'll release his 2013 taxes - remain unknown.

The statement, by campaign manager Melissa Sellers, came in response to a Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald report published over the weekend analyzing his "blind trust," his state financial disclosure and the differences in the way he reports his finances to the federal government and the public.

"The Governor is in full compliance with both federal and state reporting requirements, which are different," Sellers wrote.

But that claim, at least regarding Florida's "reporting requirements," is a matter of dispute.

Jim Apthorp, a longtime aide to former Gov. Reubin Askew, is suing to force Scott to adhere to the letter of a Florida constitutional requirement that elected officials make a "full and public disclosure" by annually filing "a sworn statement showing net worth and identifying each asset and liability in excess of $1,000 and its value."

Scott hasn't done that. Instead, Scott signed into law a "blind trust" statute that allows him to place assets in an account that shields each annually from public view.

Scott, who reported a net worth of about $133 million, formed his blind trust in 2011 - two years before signing the blind trust law. He and Sellers say he did it to shield himself from knowing what his investments are and from subsequent charges of having a conflict of interest.

Reports show Scott did know some of his investments because he signed off on them due to Securities and Exchange Commission rules.

"Some financial transactions require the Governor's signature to comply with federal SEC law," Sellers wrote. "However, the Governor has no control over the purchase, sale or change of any assets."

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