SARASOTA — Rick Scott, in some respects, makes it easy on journalists. If a reporter misses something he says in an interview, maybe even spaces out for a moment, it doesn't really matter, because Scott is certain to say the same thing again. And again. And again.
So it was Labor Day in Sarasota, as the Florida governor invited a few reporters to join him on a campaign "bus tour," which in fact was an opportunity to chat with Scott aboard his "Let's Keep Working" bus as it traveled about four blocks to a boisterous rally at Walt's Fish Market. The trip somehow lasted nearly 30 minutes, which was more than enough time to get a clear sense of Scott's campaign message for the next two months: Charlie Crist is a slick talker but a lousy chief executive. And he's pals with President Barack Obama.
"Charlie ran the state into the ground. It's Barack Obama in Florida. Barack Obama thinks money grows on trees. Charlie Crist thinks the same way. He would spend money on anything and everything if he could," Scott said, suggesting that cuts in education and environmental protection early in his term were due to federal stimulus money running out and Scott having to clean up the budgetary "mess" Crist left him.