Thursday, January 15, 2015

Rick Scott Barometer #2: Sunny Skies or Fair Weather?

In my earlier post I pointed out that Corrections will be a good barometer for whether we'll have Tea Party Scott or Happy Face Scott for the next two years. Will he allow reform, or choke it in the cradle? We now have a second barometer, though it is one we knew was coming: Education.

Keep in mind the genesis of this: Scott promised record per-student funding for Florida education, not as his own idea, but as a "yeah, me too" to Charlie Crist's demand that cuts to education be restored.

But will it make it through the Legislative sausage grinder unscathed?

And how will he pay for this increase, while supposedly cutting taxes at the same time?

In this case, watch carefully what the Legislature (GOP-dominated) does to Scott's proposal. If they disfigure it (not simply minor changes), see how he reacts. Will he demand that they do what he asks? Or will he give it the Medicaid expansion treatment, and remain silent?

Scott put himself between a rock and a hard place with this promise. But remember, if he makes good on it, it isn't because he cares about Florida. It's because he made a deal with the GOP Presidential hopefuls who campaigned for him (and even repeated his campaign lies) to behave himself so that the GOP could (they hope) capture Florida in 2016.

Will the barometer show that Scott is only be education's "fair weather" friend? Wait and see.

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