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Rick Scott talked coronavirus on Tuesday.

Coronavirus in Florida

Not ‘government’s role’: Rick Scott walks tightrope on mask mandate at Republican National Convention

Senator was light on specifics related to Florida coronavirus fight.

On Tuesday, Sen. Rick Scott struggled with mask messaging, as Florida localities are roiled by debates about whether to require them or not.

The debate of most national interest currently: the one in Jacksonville, the home of the Republican National Convention.

Jacksonville adopted an indoor mask requirement Monday, after weeks of the Mayor saying one wasn’t needed.

Scott has simultaneously advocated mask wearing and spurned calls for a mandate, and in two media hits, he demanded mask wearing while saying it was “not government’s role” to mandate such.

On Newsmax Tuesday evening, Scott seemed to advocate a mandatory/voluntary hybrid position regarding the RNC.

“You can hold a safe convention. You’re going to have to social distance, wear a mask, you ought to be doing all these things … I just don’t think that it’s the government’s role to be doing these things,” Scott said about mandating mask wearing.

Those comments didn’t clear up earlier confusion from a Fox Business Network segment on Varney and Company Tuesday morning, in which he made similar points.

Scott suggested there too a mask mandate was a bridge too far, punctuated with bromides alternately aspirational and libertarian.

“Why don’t they just tell us ‘this business, they have employees or customers with coronavirus’?  Guess what? We wouldn’t go there,” Scott said, adding that people would “avoid the bad places.”

“Quit telling us what to do with our lives,” Scott said. “Let us make our own decisions.”

“Why do we have to have all these rules, all these laws,” Scott complained later in the Fox Business Network segment.

“They can’t mandate everything,” Scott said. “We’re telling our law enforcement to do things they can’t enforce.”

He added that people going to bars are “selfish” and “wrong,” but did not address the DBPR action to close them in the state.

Florida continues to see a surge in documented cases of COVID-19, with 6,000 new positive tests driving the total diagnoses over the course of the epidemic past 152,000.

Written By

A.G. Gancarski has been a working journalist for over two decades. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." He can be reached at a.g.gancarski@gmail.com.

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Sonja Fitch

    June 30, 2020 at 12:39 pm

    As if nazi Rick cares! Nazi Rick wants goptrump cult leader to drop out! Nazi Rick would then step up to be the goptrump cult candidate!!! No RNC! Florida is only 600 positives covid to beat Texas! 60000 to be number 2! No RNC!

    • Arl

      July 1, 2020 at 3:16 pm

      Agree. Scott’s eyes are on the presidency. I am from FL and his company was involved in the biggest Medicaid/Medicare fraud case. Coward Scott knew which way the wind was blowing and he resigned before the investigation was completed. He took the witness stand and claimed his 5th Amendments rights over 70 times.

  2. NO MORE REPUBLICANS !!!

    June 30, 2020 at 12:50 pm

    Really, did anyone EVER see a dorkier-looking and quirkier-acting mook than Chromedome Scott? He’s as crooked and as moronic as Dimwit Donnie – and the Yale- and Harvard-educated DeSycophantis has hooked his star to those two???
    Ugh! Yuck! Ppfftt! Apparently, Ronnie Republican learned absolutely nothing at Yale and Harvard!

    • Arl

      July 1, 2020 at 3:17 pm

      He is Trumpee who wants to be president. He plays both sides of the fence. Read my comment above.

  3. Frankie M.

    June 30, 2020 at 1:51 pm

    Is tricky ricky calling for greater transparency in guvmint & bidness? Oh the irony! Do as I say not as I do…lmao. Shouldn’t he be going off on a tangent about Chiner? How about bountygate?? Naw that won’t fly. I know talk about benghazi with your tea party supporters if the covid hasn’t gotten them already. Everyone loves an oldie.

  4. franky burns

    July 1, 2020 at 3:24 pm

    “Why don’t they just tell us ‘this business, they have employees or customers with coronavirus’? Guess what? We wouldn’t go there,” Scott said, adding that people would “avoid the bad places.”

    —Huh?

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