Sen. Rick Scott released a television ad promoting an 11-point Republican agenda for the midterms. The chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, he’s pushed the plan on the Rescue America website.
The ad starts with footage of crime in America’s streets, including riots during Black Lives Matter protests last summer as well as street crimes. It also mixes in film of gas pumps, and of crowds of migrants at the southern U.S. border with Mexico.
“Our borders are being invaded, inflation is raging and our shelves are empty,” Scott says in narration. “Crime is rampant. Police are being killed, and God-fearing people are being silenced.”
Scott then appears in his trademark Navy cap and says, “We’ve put together a plan to rescue America.”
The ad can be watched online now and will begin airing on television airways nationwide on Friday. Paid for by Scott’s own PAC, Scott for Florida, he said the ad is backed by a seven-figure national TV and digital buy.
Scott this week shook up the national political conversation with his plan, released as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has held back from laying out any alternative agenda for Republicans.
The red meat plan presented starkly conservative messaging, but also fueled immediate criticism from Democrats.
The plan stokes culture wars on abortion and anti-LGBTQ stances, quoting the Bible and making a case for a heartbeat bill.
“Men and women are biologically different, ‘male and female He created them.’ Modern technology has confirmed that abortion takes a human life. Facts are facts, the Earth is round, the sun is hot, there are two genders, and abortion stops a beating heart.”
But the section earning the most attention and immediate pushback involves taxes. “All Americans should pay some income tax to have skin in the game, even if a small amount,” the plan states. “Currently over half of Americans pay no income tax.”
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee immediately responded by launching radio ads.
“We’re making sure voters know the facts about Senate Republicans’ agenda: a tax hike on millions of seniors and over half of all Americans,” said Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Communications Director David Bergstein. “At every opportunity, Republicans are pushing the interests of the ultra-wealthy and big corporations that get rich by spiking costs — all while working families pay the price. In 2022, voters will hold every GOP Senate candidate accountable.”
Scott, for his part, went to Fox News to deny an increase in taxes.
There, host Sean Hannity (falsely) stated there’s nothing in the plan about raising taxes on half of Americans, and Scott seemed to agree. “Of course not,” Scott said. “[Democratic Majority Leader] Chuck Schumer, who wants to raise taxes for everything while I’ve cut, as I was Governor, I cut taxes and fees 100 times. But Chuck Schumer, he’s all in to take every dime you have.”
The plan also states, “No ballots that show up after Election Day will be counted, ever,” something that comes as little surprise to those who followed Scott’s narrow election in 2018 after a recount, when he fought in court against counting any vote-by-mail ballots arriving after Election Day regardless of whether it was postmarked before.
But perhaps the most striking part of the plan is how much it promotes Scott. His name appeared in a 31-page document a total of 36 times, but no Republican senators up for re-election this year, including Florida’s Marco Rubio, are mentioned anywhere.