SUN SENTINEL ON ED BOARD MEETING WITH RICK SCOTT: ‘HE TALKED FOR ONE HOUR, AND SAID NOTHING’
Can Rick Scott Buy His Way Into a Second Term? [Sun Sentinel Editorial] “Gov. Rick Scott came to talk to the Sun Sentinel Editorial Board Tuesday, and one thought entered my mind: I hope he has a lot of money to run for re-election, because he isn’t going to get another term based on his profound communication skills. He talked for one hour, and said nothing. He was evasive or non-committal. He is friendly enough, shakes hands with everybody, looks them in the eye. But he basically answers every question with “I’m focused on education and creating jobs.” When asked about legislation, he keeps saying “I’ve got to look at the bill.” Hey, you are the governor. You should know what’s in every important bill. Or at least your entourage should know. Scott does have one thing going for him in his re-election bid. He is still incredibly wealthy. Will that be enough to get him a second term?
FLORIDA VOICES: RICK SCOTT’S INABILITY TO TAKE POSITIONS ON A MYRIAD OF ISSUES SHOWS LACK OF LEADERSHIP
Scott, Rubio Should Take Stands [Florida Voices Editorial] “Gov. Rick Scott needs to see a bill to determine whether he believes Florida should ban texting while driving. He needs to see the bill to determine whether he supports lifelong alimony. On April 8, he told the Palm Beach Post Editorial Board that he didn’t know which Senate alternative to expanding Medicaid he prefers…To let Scott tell it, he hasn’t seen the proposed legislation on most of the key issues being debated in Tallahassee. And he can’t take a position on these issues until he sees the fine print…First, it doesn’t instill confidence in his leadership that Scott doesn’t know the details of major bills. Second, he doesn’t instill confidence in his leadership that he needs to see the specifics of a bill to know whether he supports the concept in general. After more than two years in the job, Scott is still claiming to be a businessman not a politician. If you dodge questions like a politician, repeat talking points like a politician and lack the guts to take a position like a politician, then you’re a politician.”
FORMER FL SEC. OF STATE: SENATE’S ELECTION BILL ‘BAD PUBLIC POLICY’
Browning on Election Bill Provisions: “Bad Public Policy” [Palm Beach Post] “Former Secretary of State Kurt Browning called a provision included in the Senate’s election package yesterday allowing the secretary of state to dock election supervisors pay and essentially put them on probation ‘bad public policy.’…Progressives and voting rights groups objected another provision in the bill limiting voter assistance. Under the measure, someone could only give assistance to voters they personally knew prior to Election Day and would only be able help a maximum of 10 people.”
UNCONSCIONABLE RUBIO VOTES AGAINST COMMONSENSE GUN CONTROL REFORMS
Rubio and Nelson Split Votes as Senate Defeats Expanded Gun Background Checks [Tampa Bay Times] “The U.S. Senate moments ago defeated a bipartisan compromise measure that would have expanded background checks to gun shows and online sales. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio joined those to kill the measure; Bill Nelson voted for it. The vote was so closely watched that Vice President Joe Biden presided. Families from Newtown, Conn., watched from the gallery.
AS US SEN. GOP REJECTS PROVISION 90% OF AMERICANS SUPPORT, FL GOP HOUSE MEMBER SHOUTS ‘LET LIBERTY RING,’ MAKES SOUND OF LOADING A GUN
After Gun Bill Falters in Congress, Fla. Legislature Sends ‘Hands Off Our Guns’ Memorial to Obama [Miami Herald] “Though gun control efforts in the U.S. Senate appear to stall Wednesday, the Florida Legislature is sending a message to Washington just in case: Hands off our guns. In a 81-36 vote, the Legislature passed House Memorial 545, which warns federal officials not to infringe on the rights of gun owners…One Representative shouted out “Let liberty ring!” before making the sound of loading a gun and asking his colleagues to support the bill.”
WITH LIVES AT STAKE GOP HOUSE AND SEN. LEADERSHIP STILL CANNOT AGREE ON MEDICAID EXPANSION
Medicaid Battle Raging [WCTV] “A high stakes battle over health care is raging at the state Capitol over accepting billions in federal money for health care. Governor Rick Scott and the state Senate are on one side, the House Speaker on the other…Up in the air is a plan to cover one point three million Floridians who don’t now have insurance, all at federal expense for the first three years. Jacksonville Congresswoman Corrine Brown, says ignoring the money is foolish. ‘We have one million Floridians that need health care. Three years is completely paid for,’ says Rep. Brown. On the same side are the Governor and state Senate who want the money. The powerful House Speaker is saying no. ‘I think that is one of the biggest issues that will have to either overcome or it’s going to be a deal breaker whether or not we take the federal money,’ says Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-New Port Richey.”
Florida Lawmakers Far Apart on How to Cover Uninsured Poor [Palm Beach Post] “[…]With the Legislature in its scheduled final three weeks, a deadline is beginning to shadow attempts to reach agreement on the health insurance expansion authorized under the federal Affordable Care Act. The House and Senate have rejected Gov. Rick Scott’s call for expanding Medicaid. But the House has gone even further by refusing to embrace any plan that relies on increased federal dollars.”
SEN. NELSON SHOWING STRONG LEADERSHIP IN SENATE
Nelson Thrusts Himself into the Spotlight [Orlando Sentinel] “[…]After more than a decade of low-key legislating, the Florida Democrat has jumped into the national spotlight at the start of his third term, taking high-profile stands in support of gay marriage and gun control while leading a new campaign to protect the elderly from fraud. Though Nelson, 70, insists little has changed, even fellow Florida Democrats have noticed a new bounce in his step since he crushed Republican challenger Connie Mack IV last fall by 13 percentage points. ‘I think he [Nelson] was certainly rejuvenated by such a resounding victory, and he sees the opportunity to get a lot done,’ said Kevin Cate, a Democratic political consultant.”