Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Gov. Scott tells Republicans that GOP is turning economy around

ST. PETERSBURG — By cutting taxes and slicing government regulations, Florida's Republican leaders have turned the state's economy in the right direction, Gov. Rick Scott said Saturday.

"Conservative principles, lower taxes, less regulation, smaller government, liking businesses — it works," Scott said.

"We've had the second-biggest drop in unemployment in the country," Scott told more than 400 people at Pinellas County's Lincoln Day Dinner.

Scott was full of praise for Republican legislators in the audience. But not so much for President Barack Obama, who he said was preparing to come to Florida soon "to brag about how well we're doing."

"I'm sure he'll give us credit," Scott quipped.

The Lincoln Day Dinner is an annual fundraiser and rallying session for GOP faithful. This one came four months after Obama's re-election, but the Democrat's victory wasn't up for discussion.

Instead, Scott said, "every person who lives in the state of Florida should be a Republican. We're the party of jobs, we're the party of education, we're the party of keep the cost of living low."

Business owners should be Republicans, and so should employees who need those businesses to thrive, Scott said. "If you're on a safety net, you for sure should be a Republican because who's going to pay for that?" Somebody working a job paying taxes, he said.

Scott also touted his plan to give $2,500 pay raises to schoolteachers, and that got applause too, but a few people seemed to be grumbling about it. Pinellas Republican chairman Michael Guju said he heard the reaction, but said it's hard to make any judgments about the meaning of an "audience noise." He stressed, "I think the governor's showing real leadership."

One Republican name that didn't come up was Jennifer Carroll, Scott's lieutenant governor who resigned abruptly this month in the wake of an investigation into a $300 million gambling operation involving Internet cafes. Scott declined to give an opinion after the dinner on whether Internet cafes in general should be banned. He said he would wait to see how the Legislature acted.

Attorney General Pam Bondi introduced Scott to the audience, and Scott returned the favor by praising her for her work to combat human trafficking and prescription drug abuse.

Bondi urged parents in the audience to be wary of dangerous synthetic drugs with harmless-sounding names such as "Scooby Doo" being marketed to adolescents. She also discussed the high number of drug-addicted babies being born in Tampa Bay hospitals.

In spite of Obama's re-election, Bondi said it's not time for a Republican course correction. "We're not going to change our principles," she said. "We're going to work harder than the other guys and we are going to keep our word."

Gov. Scott tells Republicans that GOP is turning economy around 03/23/13 [Last modified: Saturday, March 23, 2013 11:26pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Peter Budaj, Lightning lose to Devils in shootout; Nikita Kucherov scores

    Lightning Strikes

    NEWARK, N.J. — For Peter Budaj, Tuesday's season debut had a shaky start.

    The Lightning’s Vladislav Namestnikov, right, battles Damon Severson for the puck.
  2. Mother's testimony about toddler's death brings judge to tears

    Criminal

    TAMPA — Nayashia Williams woke up early on May 7, 2014, to the sound of her daughter calling for her. It was the last time the young mother's mornings would begin with a summons from Myla Presley, who couldn't yet climb over the mesh fencing around the playpen she used as a bed.

    Deandre Gilmore looks towards the gallery Tuesday in a Tampa courtroom. Gilmore is accused of killing the 19 month-old daughter of his girlfriend in 2014. He said the child fell while he was giving her a bath. [CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  3. Speakers: Getting tough can't be only response to teen car thefts

    Crime

    ST. PETERSBURG — Bob Dillinger remembers coming to Pinellas County as a legal intern in 1975. There were five major poverty zones in St. Petersburg.

    Wengay Newton, Florida House of Representatives (in front, in center), talks as a panelist to a packed room during a community forum on "Reclaiming our Youth: Is Juvenile Justice a Reality?" at the Dr. Carter G. Woodson Museum in St. Petersburg Wednesday evening (10/17/17). The event was presented by the Fred G. Minnis, Sr. Bar Association. Community leaders discussed the ongoing auto theft epidemic among Pinellas youth.
  4. Internal White House documents allege manufacturing decline increases abortions, infertility and spousal abuse

    Politics

    White House officials working on trade policy were alarmed last month when a top adviser to President Donald Trump circulated a two-page document that alleged a weakened manufacturing sector leads to an increase in abortion, spousal abuse, divorce and infertility, two people familiar with the matter told the …

  5. Black entrepreneur says city stiffing him on project after he endorsed Rick Baker

    News

    ST. PETERSBURG — A prominent African-American resident says his endorsement of mayoral candidate Rick Baker has led city officials to freeze him out of a major construction project along the historic "Deuces" stretch of 22nd Street S.