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New TV ad blames Rick Scott for Florida’s Red Tide mess

The ad is a direct assault on the two-term governor's record on the environment.
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Published Aug. 27, 2018
Updated Sep. 13, 2018

A new environmental ad in Florida's U.S. Senate race blames Gov. Rick Scott for Florida's Red Tide algae blooms along the southwest coast that have chased away tourists and threatened the state's economy.

READ MORE: Red tide's toxic toll — your questions answered

The ad is sponsored by the liberal dark money group Majority Forward, which says it's spending $2.9 million on the campaign but declines to say which TV markets where it's playing.

"It's killing sea life, battering our economy and making people sick," the ad says. "Red tide continues to devastate our area. And it's fair to blame Rick Scott." The blame assertion is lifted from an Orlando Sentinel editorial, which appears on screen.

The ad closes with a close-up of Scott's face and urges viewers to call the governor's office in Tallahassee and tell him to "clean up this mess."

Watch the ad here.

In a statement, Scott's campaign said: "Bill Nelson and his pals in Washington have failed to protect Florida's environment for decades. Now, Nelson's pals are spending millions of dollars in false attacks to prop up his failing campaign."

The ad is the latest example of Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson benefiting from the "undisclosed, unlimited money" that he has decried in the past.

Scott issued an executive order on Aug. 13, directing $1.5 million to three programs to combat the worst outbreak of red tide in a decade.

"We will continue to deploy all state resources and do everything possible to make sure that Gulf Coast residents are safe and area businesses can recover," Scott said in a statement.