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Scott's Revolving Door of Failure

Aug 8, 2013

By Dan


If you ran a business and nearly every person you appointed to a critical position resigned under a cloud of incompetence or fraud at some point someone just might point out the failure is yours.  Florida Governor Rick Scott is hoping no one notices that in just three short years he has compiled an unprecedented record of his top appointees being forced out or resigning due to a lack of ability, a lack of honesty, or both. Consider the following:

•    Scott’s Lieutenant Governor resigned amidst allegations she assisted a fake veterans charity whose organizers have all been indicted for criminal misconduct.

•    His Chief of Staff left after it was revealed he steered a no-bid consulting contract to a friend who, ironically, was leading a task force rooting out government waste.

•    Scott has gone through multiple Education Commissioners, two of whom departed based on revelations of incompetence and fraud surrounding the state’s controversial school grading system.  

•    His appointee responsible for protecting vulnerable children, the head of the Department of Children and Families (DCF), left after a series of horrific and entirely preventable tragedies. 

•    His appointees responsible for protecting vulnerable senior citizens are out: the first was shown the door because Scott believed he was over-protecting our seniors, and the second is on house arrest for “unspecified” wrongdoing.

•    Scott has forced out, not one, but two Directors of Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity. One was canned because he admitted the state wasted tens of million to lure companies to Florida without producing jobs; the other was fired because it was revealed he received unemployment benefits during his ritzy European vacations. (His excuse: it gave him a better understanding of his department’s mission of overseeing the state’s unemployment compensation program)

•    And the man he chose to oversee programs for persons with disabilities resigned to avoid testifying before a Senate panel about a sex scandal at a Tampa group home he supervised.

    And this list, by no means, is even close to Scott’s entire list of drive-by appointees. He has had three different chiefs-of-staff, a handful of education commissioners, four secretaries of states, three general counsels, and three secretaries of corrections. 

    When Rick Scott said he was going to run Florida like a business, it makes you wonder what kind of business he was referring to.

    This inability to find competent and honest people to serve Floridians has real repercussions. 

    Public school students have had 5 different education commissioners, the last one holding the job for only 7 months. How can Floridians have faith in a school system with such rampant turnover at the top?

    Hiring an unqualified ideologue to lead our Department of Children&Families made it much more difficult to protect vulnerable children under state supervision. Floridians were shocked by the recent parade of child deaths from DCF miscues.

    Vulnerable senior citizens, public school children, Floridians with disabilities, children at risk of abuse. The list of our citizens short-changed by this incompetence just keeps growing.

    But it’s not hard to figure out why Scott’s appointees seem so ethically challenged.

    After all, it is Scott himself who has fostered a “pay to play” style of governance, making it no surprise that so many of his appointees have followed his lead. After Scott opened up a re-election fund, ironically titled “Let’s Get to Work,” he did just that. Scott began furiously accepting huge checks from special interests trying to obtain profitable state contracts or favorable legislation. 

    When a new upstart insurance company with a shady history needed support to get a no-bid Citizens Property Insurance deal approved, it ponied up $110,000 to Scott’s fund, and that month Scott’s appointees starting pushing through a $52 million giveaway.

    It’s also Governor Scott who has made his administration unaccepting of anything other than the most rigid right-wing ideologies. When the feds were offering Florida $2.4 billion for a high-speed rail to connect Tampa and Orlando, Scott placated his tea party supporters by rejecting the funds notwithstanding the tens of thousands of jobs the project would have created. 

    Filling your administration with ideologues means pragmatism takes a back seat to political ideology. Many of Scott’s appointees failed because they followed flawed dogmas at the expense of job performance.

    Ultimately, Scott is hoping voters don’t blame him for the revolving door of incompetence he has brought to Florida.  He hopes to be re-elected by trying to take credit for a national economic recovery that, ironically, has been buoyed by fiscal policies he opposed. But given the magnitude of dysfunction Rick Scott has brought to Florida, it is more likely voters show him the same exit door used by his growing roster of failed appointees.





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Could not have said it any better. I have never seen a more incompetent governor. Between him and Rubio, who only knows one word NO when it comes to voting, instead of doing what is best for Floridians, I cannot wait until 2014. I love how Rubio cares so much about the people who elected him that he puts his "modest" home up for sale for $675,000K and is high tailing it to DC with sites on the White House. He no more cares about our needs or that we are the ones who gave him the opportunity to represent us. Time to put these two fools out of office as they only care about those who can line their pockets.



All the reasons why I will vote for a Democrat (again) at our next election for governor in Florida.



I agree he should be fired. He's a crook.



Thank you. I will share this on my FB page. Again, I remember you from debate when I coached the Rockway Jr. High/Coral Park Sr. High teams.



Hopefully we have a good candidate to run against him.



Pink slip Rick in 2014



Outstanding piece, one again, Dan!



He is an embarrassment to all Floridians.



He should not have been elected in the first place! Voters knew of his past history and decided to elect him anyway...



Incompetence like that should be rewarded, yeah right!



He opposed every bill that made sense and can't keep state employeesWorking for him mostly because he is an embarrassment to us allKelly StPetersburg



Thank you, Dan. Now if we can only get out the vote in 2014!



He is an embarrassment to all Floridians.



I've challenged my fellow voters, (the Repugnant-ones) to come forward and admit that they voted for Rick Scott many times over the past years that we've suffered under his 'pay to-play' style of rule that I wouldn't misidentify as 'governance'. So far, NO admissions! Who-in their right mind would vote for someone who was (obviously a CROOK)??? I'll tell you who; scared, desperate, heartless idealogues ALL - the Repugnant-one Party voters, that's who! Now, let's all go into denial-shall we??? Great article. Please keep Floridians focused on this horrible 'reality'. Thanks Dan Gelber!!!



Right about Scott, but everything was for sale in the Crist administration with LeMieux steering the contracts, including one to his old law firm he then re-joined. And let's not forget that Charlie installed the crook Greer at RPOF. Dems could do a lot better.



Don't forget the his appointments to the PSC.



If this criminal fraud is re-elected, I will have lost all faith in the intelligence of Florida republicans.



Not to mention the dedicated professionals driven out of state jobs by incompetent leadership



The Litany of complaint from Dan falls into the "our incompetent corrupt Democrats would have done a better job that Rick Scott's incompetent corrupt Republicans. At least Republicans have the decency to resign and leave, Democrats give awards or University jobs to reward malfeasance.Does Dan Gelber support the Democrat Occupy forces at the Governor's office? Is this going to be the new style of Democrat pressure group lobbying in Florida? Send in children, armed with misinformation and Democrat talking points, to embarrass the Governor prior to an election?



Please get him out of Florida! !!!



Rick Scott is a terrible CEO, and that's just what he and his extreme plutocratic Libertarians want, a government unable to function. If you believe in little or bad government vote Republican (they're fronting for the plutocrats).



I say anyone but Scott 2014. Can't believe he was even elected. Embarrassed in fact. What did Florida expect with his history of Medicare Fraud.



When election time comes around Gov. Scott should not be re-elected. He has proven a record when he was in charge of the medical company he ran. Of course he will take credit for the national economic recovery like the type of individual he is. I hope the citizens of Florida do not fall for him. Also, take a long look at who is in Tallahassee presenting the citizens of Florida. It looks like Florida can not get anything right.



You should check out the turnover in the State Agencies since he has been elected. DEP, Health, Lottery to mention a few. Who ever takes over for the current Governor is going to find Agencies whose employees were exploited, untrained and left for the next administration to cleanup.



Our political class and our so called leaders of Florida are ALL useless. The Republicans have been in charge TOO LONG, and I want to see them out of power. However, the Democrats have to present a viable plan for the future of Florida. Frankly, I am not holding my breath, but I hope the Dems at least put up someone I can hold my nose and vote for. By the way, that viable plan for the future does NOT involve gun control or an emphasis on abortion rights. Those are 2 issues that will ensure continued Republican control.



I disagree about DCF Secretary Wilkins. He was forced out after he began to realize the privatization of DCF was not working. The deaths of the children in DCF care all came as the result of privatized areas where vital DCF functions were handed over to private entities. When the Secretary sought to place accountability controls over these entities and their top management, they ran to the legislature and the Governor with their hands full of campaign contributions complaining about the Secretary and how he was not working on Jeb!'s vision of small government and outsourcing. Secretary Wilkin's crime was that he was beginning to understand privatization at DCF did not work.



Someone said "Does Dan Gelber support the Democrat Occupy forces at the Governor's office? Is this going to be the new style of Democrat pressure group lobbying in Florida?" Well lets HOPE he does. What you are referring to is the PEOPLE of the state of Florida who see something they dislike (Stand your Ground Laws) and making their voices heard. Since when is it either unhealthy or undemocratic to actually want to be governed BY the people and FOR the people? At what point do you tell your constituents to shut up, as this poster implies needs to be done? Seriously - WE THE PEOPLE not WE THE CORPORATIONS, which is who Scott has catered to, including his most favored corporation - HIMSELF.



When we Floridians permit a man with questionable antecedents to "buy" the elected position of governor, it is hardly surprising that his ensemble would be occupied by like regarded people. Those "officials" appointed by Scott have either been corrupted or courageous enough to disagree with his demagoguery. Floridians were well warned that Scott was a big mistake, by none other than Republicans themselves. Our state is now reaping the consequences of a disastrous mistake indeed.



And that's what happens when you put a "should be felon" in charge of a State!



I never like him, and knew there were some resignations, but had no idea it was that bad. That's beyond horrible, but what can you expect from someone should have been charged in the Medicare fraud, but slip out just in time.



Southern Strategy lobbyist does business with FDLE and works as auxiliary officer for FDLE. Gets building access and state email. Only a conflict if its a Democratic lobbying firm.



HS MUST GO NOW!



FDLE secretary hired by Thrasher at Southern Strategy. Thrasher takes over RPOF.Sink and Crist called for independent investigation of RPOF by feds but nobody listened. Connect the dots.Gelber responds to Sink's call for independent RPOF investigationhttp://www.wmnf.org/news_stories/8434



Who polices the police. Bustle lobbies FDLE and is part time officer at FDLE. Cozy and perfectly ok - it's John Thrashers firm. No conflict of interest here keep moving.Electra Theodorides-Bustle Partner at Southern Strategy Group Tallahassee, Florida Area Government Relations Electra Theodorides-BustleSex: FemaleRace: WhiteAge: 46Employment HistoryFlorida Department Of Law EnforcementClass: Law EnforcementType: Part-TimeStart Date: 10/13/2010




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