Let this be a lesson to all you civic dilettantes out there. You know who you are…you’re the ones who don’t do your homework and then let yourselves be bamboozled by TV ads at the last minute, because you have no foundation of real knowledge about the candidates.
Rick Scott spent $72 million of his own money to, among other things, swamp us with his feel-good “Let’s get to work” ads. His opponent, Alex Sink, had to resort to more conventional methods of political fundraising, which wouldn’t have been a liability in any other year.
She was overwhelmed. She may not have been everyone’s cup of tea, but at least she had experience in state government. True to form, Floridians voted for the person they’d heard of, and Scott made sure through his phenomenal media buys that he was that person.
Even with all that, Sink only lost by a one per cent margin. It may turn out to be a fateful one per cent, as our new governor has shown a remarkable political tone-deafness about how to address the demands of his office.
The title of “Governor” in front of one’s name does not make one a leader. Leading derives from being transparent with those being led, gathering consensus, and building faith and trust among one’s fellow citizens that the path one is taking is considered, and the best for all.
Leading does not consist of making arbitrary, unilateral decisions about matters of state policy, leaving one’s own attorney general and other law enforcement officers out on an embarrassing limb, and then compounding the blunder by imperiously refusing to explain one’s rationale.
Putting the kibosh on the state prescription database is an incomprehensible and destructive decision. Let us hope it is not the first of many. Four years is a long time, and things are tough enough for Florida as it is.