Alex Sink on Bill McCollum endorsing Rick Scott: "Took him a long time, didn't it"

In last Wednesday night's debate, with the biggest audience so far to watch the two candidates in one setting, Rick Scott made several comments that frankly, were untrue.  The GOP has said that Sink plans to increase spending by $12 billion, but Sink has never released any dollar figures to any of her proposed programs.  Scott said she intended to raise taxes to pay for those plans, cementing in the minds of some Florida voters that Sink is a tax and spend liberal, though there is little basis to believe the Sink, a centrist former banker, has any intention of doing so (and she'd need a Republican legislature to support those plans, anyway).

CL asked if she was frustrated about some of the misinformation the Scott campaign is peddling, and does she fear that the voters will go for it?

"I think people saw Rick Scott and his tactics even back in the Republican primary, " she said.  "The highly negative advertising that he ran against the Attorney General.  All of Florida's newspapers are endorsing me, it's 13 zip.  What they're saying is he can't be trusted.  The things that he said about his opponents are misleading, they're deceptive, they're smears, they're cynical.  I just have to trust the Florida voters to do their own research and then make their own evaluation and just not be taken by these thirty second soundbites that are coming from a man who won't even appear before an editorial board."

A whole host of Democrats who are on the ballot were at today's rally (including Attorney General candidate Dan Gelber, House Representative in District 57 Stacy Frank, Congresswoman Kathy Castor, Hillsborough County Commission hopeful Linda-Saul Sena, and Les Miller, County Commission in District 3, who faces a write-in candidate.

CL asked Miller what he made of Rick Scott's ads that target Sink as being linked to President Obama, who despite an avalanche of negative criticism,  is only slightly underwater in national polls (Obama has 47% approval in the latest WSJ-NBC News poll from earlier this week).  Miller mentioned how the Obama label is being used even farther away from Washington, such as in Pinellas County, where Republican Susan Latvala is targeting her Democratic opponent, Bob Hackworth, by tossing out the O-word.

"That is absolutely over the top.  That is absolutely wrong," Miller said of how the GOP is nationalizing local and state races, "but we all know why that's happening.  It's what they think they can do to get the conservative vote out there to vote for Scott because of Barack Obama, but I think there in for a rude awakening." Miller said he believes too many poll sane conducted by contacting people by landline phones and not cellular ones, which is why he thinks Democrats will do better than expected.

We'll know in 10 days whether those words of wisdom, are simply of denial.

Although the Alex Sink campaign on Saturday hailed their latest newspaper endorsement in the governor's race (this one by the News-Press in Fort Myers) as the "Lucky 13," the latest polls in her intense race against Republican Rick Scott show that the populace in Florida isn't that impressed, with a St. Pete Times/Bay News 9/Ipsos survey released Saturday showing Scott maintaining a 3%, 41-38%.

Sink was in East Tampa early Saturday afternoon, at a get out the early vote at the Belmont Heights Little League field off of Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.  In her prepared remarks to the 100 or so people in attendance, she said, "I''m going to do my part.  I'm going to work hard in the next 10 days.  But I can't do this by myself.  I have to have you.  You have to be the voice of the future of Florida."  Sink exhorted them to tell 10, 15, 20 friends to go out to vote as well.  "Explain to them why this election is so important."

Speaking briefly to reporters after her speech, CL asked Sink what she made of Bill McCollum late Friday night finally endorsing the man who beat him in August, Rick Scott.

"Well it took him a long time, didn't it?" She responded.

McCollum's endorsement was rather terse and hardly ringing. He said in a statement that "Florida is facing a critical time.  Our state needs conservative leaders who will grow our economy and create jobs.  We need merit pay and an end to teacher tenure in our public schools, major litigation reform, smaller government, low taxes and a repeal of Obamacare.  With that in mind, I will cast my vote for Rick Scott for Governor.  It's the better choice for Florida."

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