Everywhere Gov. Rick Scott goes, they go.
With high-definition Canon video cameras, the political operatives have traveled tens of thousands of miles in the past year, recording every Scott speech, event and interaction with reporters, feeding it to The Vault, a colossal database housed in an office building in Washington.
The two full-time staffers for American Bridge don't everconfront Scott,but they have complicated life for the Republican seeking re-election in November, amplifying his propensity to evade questions, generating news coverage with their video clips and backing up state Democrats who will be outspent by Scott and the GOP.
"Tracking" is not a new phenomenon in politics yetthe liberalAmerican Bridge is injecting it with steroids— 42 staffers in 38 states have traveled more than 487,000 miles this election cycle — and carving a new trail in opposition research.
The effort represents another turn in the fast-moving trend of outside groups and money in elections.
"Florida is a place where we like to work," American Bridge president Brad Woodhouse, a blunt-talking operative with glasses and close-cropped graying hair, said from his Washington office. "Rick Scott's been the gift that keeps on giving." More from Alex Leary of Tampa Bay Times, @LearyReports here.