U.S. Sen. Rick Scott is making his presence felt down the stretch of this campaign, balancing efforts to shore up the GOP Senate position with moves to boost the President.
And, while he’s at it, to boost his own position relative to his next campaign in 2024.
The Senator took to Fox and Friends Thursday morning to promote an ad from his political committee, “Let’s Get to Work,” blasting the Democratic presidential ticket.
The spot is vintage Scott, with the Senator wearing his signature Navy hat, as he disparages “radical” plans from the Democratic ticket.
“I just put up an ad to help the President get the vote out,” Scott told hosts on the morning show. “I’m going to do everything I can to help President Trump get elected.”
However, that “everything” will not include a stop at the President’s Tampa rally, as Scott is in Arizona for embattled Sen. Martha McSally, facing a tough reelection bid.
The Senator has made sure media has known he has good reason for skipping every Trump rally since COVID-19 became a concern, events that others, such as Gov. Ron DeSantis, former Attorney General Pam Bondi, and U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, make it a priority not to miss.
“I’m busting my butt to raise money to keep the Republican Senate,” Scott said earlier this month, again on Fox and Friends. “That’s what I spent all last week doing.”
It’s unlikely that Scott’s GOTV ad will significantly alter the larger 2020 narrative, a cacophony of political message on the Florida airwaves.
However, 2024 represents a crossroads for the Senator, who could run for reelection or pursue the Republican presidential nomination in what will undoubtedly be a wide-open and crowded field, at least in the exploratory stage.
To that end, political watchers will note another ad he cut in recent days, in which he took issue with rioters and protesters for not being more like South Africa’s Nelson Mandela and the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.
“We will not surrender America to fascist punks or woke elitists who despise everything we stand for,” Scott vowed, recycling previous phrasings on this subject. “If you’re not mad, it’s time to get mad.”
When Scott was Governor and traveled the state for news conferences, he would respond to almost any question about his widely-expected 2018 Senate bid by saying how many days he had left to go in office and that he was focused solely on that job.
For the next four years, the in-state interviews will be few, but the question will loom large: is the countdown clock ticking on Rick Scott’s Senate tenure?
And is he already gearing up for his next move, one that could include forays into New Hampshire, Iowa, and other quadrennial hotspots.
To watch Scott’s ad, click on the image below: