As Florida Gov. Rick Scott begins to make the inevitable pivot to a Senate candidate, his remarks from Thursday’s Enterprise Florida board meeting in Jacksonville were worth noting.
Scott crystallized the case for his economic strategy, one that has allowed him to frame a narrative of having brought the state back from recession.
“We’ve got to continue to do the right investments,” Scott said, noting the importance of ROI.
Scott noted the state’s “50 percent increase [in tourism],” a source of “1.4 million jobs.” And he said that he’s “committed to spreading the message worldwide” that there is “no place like Florida right now.”
The Governor noted the trip to Israel this weekend, citing the importance of international trade for Florida.
Excised from remarks was another illustration of Scott’s dual political role: comments made in a press release Wednesday, where Scott stressed the importance of moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem — a rhetorical priority of the right, though one that President Donald Trump has yet to push to completion.
“We’ve got to continue this. We’ve got people getting out of school, moving to our state, they need jobs,” Scott said, regarding his administration’s economic programs.
Scott’s rhetorical pivot — to the frustration of press that covers him — is to “jobs,” even on questions that have nothing to do with the job market.
Worth watching: how he’s able to take his economic story, one that seems to be a refrain to every song he sings, and translate it to the Senate race.
Political committees — such as For Florida’s Future — laid the groundwork for a potential counterargument by Sen. Bill Nelson.
That argument: that Florida’s recession has been largely an urban phenomenon, and that nearly half of Florida households are the working poor.
Can Nelson counter Scott’s economic narrative?
That may be the question that determines the next eleven months.