Rick Scott keeps goading Ron DeSantis to return extra stimulus cash

scott, rick - with ron desantis
Stimmy issues simmer between Scott and his successor.

Florida’s former Governor continues to needle his successor about returning any federal stimulus money not related to COVID-19 relief.

U.S. Sen. Rick Scott took to Fox News Thursday to chide Gov. Ron DeSantis and others for keeping the latest tranche of federal coronavirus relief funds from the American Rescue Plan Act that don’t specifically cover virus expenses.

“Send it back! We’re all American citizens. Don’t waste the money,” the Naples Republican urged on America’s Newsroom.

DeSantis said previously that proposal doesn’t make sense, as the feds would just send the money to “blue states.”

“As my mom told me, two wrongs don’t make a right. We know it’s wrong to waste taxpayer money. Don’t waste the money,” Scott said, saying he’d be “surprised” if the money was actually needed for COVID-19 expenses given that the federal government had already sent $500 billion for those purposes.

Scott went on to suggest that local and state officials would send the money back, when asked by host Bill Hemmer if any had committed to do so yet.

“Not yet. But it’s going to happen,” Scott said.

Even as Scott asserts that DeSantis and others should send the money back, the Governor is programming federal virus relief money, including for a new civics education initiative in the state of Florida.

On Wednesday in Naples, DeSantis rolled out the Civic Literacy Excellence Initiative: an ambitious proposal to use $116 million in federal coronavirus relief funds to ramp up civics education.

The one-time money from the CARES Act funded Elementary and Secondary School Relief Fund would, in theory, make Florida “the national leader in civics education” and “get politicization out of the curriculum.”

“The money’s there,” DeSantis advised. “We need to figure out the best way to do it.”

The goal is to provide “high-quality civics education,” under the auspices of the state Department of Education, with certification in the form of a “seal of excellence” and a $3,000 bonus for qualifying teachers.

The Governor is seeking legislative authorization even though he didn’t necessarily have to.

“We got this money dumped,” DeSantis noted. “I could have just spent it and said it was emergency spending.”

DeSantis has said that Florida got shortchanged on the formula, which tied allocations to official unemployment rates, but he clearly will not reject and return the money as Scott hopes.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • Jason Bianco

    March 18, 2021 at 12:56 pm

    This is why Desantis is the best and Scott continues to be tone deaf. Why give it back? We’ll be paying for it and it will go to other states. Lets take a stand on principal! says Rick Scott. Zero intelligence and he was a TERRIBLE governor. No lets use it to help Floridians. Wonder if Rick gave back his stimulus check…someone should look that up.

  • James Robert Miles

    March 18, 2021 at 2:34 pm

    Rick Scott should be forced to pay back the money the his healthcare company ripped off from the taxpayers through medicare fraud! Hypocrite much? I won’t hang waiting for Scott to do the right thing! Another stupid Florida politician who was a lousy Governor and now a lousy Senator who got elected because the average Florida voter is dumber than dirt and Rubio, Scott, DeSatan and Gaetz are perfect examples! Grow a brain people!

  • Sonja Fitch

    March 18, 2021 at 3:57 pm

    Lol lol Nazi Rick and Duffus Desantis are having another pissing match that hurts to many Floridians! These two losers have to be voted back to hell!

Comments are closed.


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