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Mitch Perry Report for 3.19.15 — Rick Scott for Senate?

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Adam Smith in the Times has an exclusive today that Rick Scott is “eyeing” a run for the U.S. Senate — in 2016.

Rumors surfaced earlier this year after Scott began spending money on TV ads — I mean, why does the just re-elected governor need to keep on campaigning? Well, certainly Scott apparently has money to burn to try to burnish his image, already damaged slightly after “Baileygate.” But the early scuttlebutt was maybe Scott was considering a run in 2016  if Marco Rubio stepped down from his seat — which would be an absolute game-changer.

Instead, Smith writes that Scott is looking at 2018, when his second term in office will be ending, and Democrat Bill Nelson will or will not attempt to run for a fourth six-year term.

Scott critics would probably be pleased if he were to export his talents to D.C., presumably because frankly he’d have a lot less influence over policy in Florida.

Being governor of a state like Florida is sort of like being a mini-president, so vast is the control one can have on this area, something that Jeb Bush certainly showed during his eight years in office.

And Scott, with a solid GOP majority Legislature behind him, is quietly leaving his legacy behind as well. Whether it’s the best one for the state depends on your political philosophy.

But with his considerable financial largesse, and the weakness of the Democratic Party, you could argue that he’s the early front-runner, if he wants that office.

In other news…

Although it’s a “nonpartisan” race, both Jackie Toledo and Guido Maniscalco are hoping that their respective political parties can help push them across the finish line in next Tuesday’s Tampa City Council District 6 race. On Tuesday night, Toledo addressed the Hillsborough County Republican Party, where she said they could help her make history by helping vote her into office.

Jack Latvala’s bill that would protect consumers from scammers who use digital skills to defraud people advanced in the state Senate yesterday.

Florida’s presidential primary will be a winner-take-all event in terms of delegates — in March of 2016.

And McDonalds workers and their allies took to the streets again, this time protesting unsafe work conditions at what used to be the country’s premier fast-food behemoth.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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