John Thrasher Makes More Sense Now for Scott's LG

By: Jeff Henderson | Posted: September 3, 2013 3:55 AM
Sen. John Thrasher

As Rick Scott’s search for a lieutenant governor extends through summer and now into September, John Thrasher’s name has once again resurfaced as one of the leading candidates for the post.

Thrasher’s name first surfaced in April and it didn’t make much sense at the time. He represents an area Scott should have in the bag. As an older white male, Thrasher doesn’t help Scott win Hispanic voters from the Democrats. Thrasher is generally seen as one of the leading conservatives in the Senate and, as a former chairman of the Republican Party of Florida (RPOF), he probably won’t help Scott win independents. While few voters cast their ballots based on running mates, Thrasher didn’t seem to help boost Scott’s re-election chances in 2014.

But Thrasher makes more sense now than he did back in the spring. While there haven’t been many polls lately, the few that have been taken show Scott gaining ground for 2014 though he’s still an underdog against Charlie Crist. Florida’s economy is picking up and the unemployment rate is below the national average. Republicans have to feel better about Scott’s chances now than they did when the year began.

Scott’s numbers might be better but he can’t afford an unproductive legislative session next year. Thrasher could help there to some extent. As a former speaker and as a conservative, he should help with the House and he is close to Senate President Don Gaetz. Scott could do much worse than having Thrasher as his point man on legislative affairs.

Naming Thrasher would be a sign of confidence for Scott. The governor’s enemies couldn't argue he is a political choice as they would if Scott named a woman or a minority as lieutenant governor, especially after the lengthy vacancy. The chattering class in Tallahassee assumed Anitere Flores would be Scott’s choice after Jennifer Carroll walked the plank. If Scott named Flores to the post after half a year, more than a few eyebrows would be raised and questions would be asked why it took so long.

While he’s had his missteps -- trying to knife Andy Gardiner’s Senate presidency ambitions comes to mind -- Thrasher has one of the sharpest political minds in Tallahassee. He can help Scott out in terms of political strategy and making sure the governor and the Legislature are on the same page.

Thrasher is starting to make more sense as Scott’s choice. If Scott picks him, it means the governor’s team thinks their boss has a real shot in 2014 and doesn’t need to throw a Hail Mary to beat Charlie Crist next year.

Tallahassee political writer Jeff Henderson wrote this analysis piece exclusively for Sunshine State News.

Comments (8)

9:14PM SEP 3RD 2013
If it is true that Gov. Scott is "still an underdog against Charlie Crist", then he needs Tim Tebow as Lt. Gov. (Tebow is in between gigs in the NFL, so now is a good time to offer him the job.)
9:40AM SEP 3RD 2013
No to John Thrasher!! I agree with RepublicanConscience. Get out of the establishment Republicans and go to the grass roots for a Lt.

Besides, Thrasher strongly opposed Scott in the primary.
Jeffery C.
8:37AM SEP 3RD 2013
He is not going to pick Thrasher, not a chance.
9:41AM SEP 3RD 2013
Chris Quackenbush
7:26AM SEP 3RD 2013
Choosing Thrasher would show me, as a voter, that Scott is completely inept politically. Common Core is emerging as the biggest issue we face and he is still hanging on to the Bu[filtered word]es and ignoring the cry of the people, his base. Last weekend, Rick Scott spoke at the Americans for Prosperity Summit in Orlando and was repeatedly heckled by a large portion of the audience of 2,000 conservatives who called to him to STOP COMMON CORE. Even after Tony Bennett was forced to resign over common core, he still proceeds to hand our children over to Obama, taking all control away from parents, local school boards, and state legislators. Common Core is blatantly unconstitutional, unwise, untested and unaffordable. The curriculum has failed where already adopted and the nation needs to rise up and reject the idea that nameless bureaucrats in Washington can do a better job than parents on providing education to their kids. Thrasher is the wrong choice. There are two groups of legislators, those who listen to the people and those who listen to Jeb Bush. The tsunami of people against common core will not forget and will vote for someone who listens.
7:21AM SEP 3RD 2013
it doesn't matter who he picks he wouldn't win re election. if he did pick thrasher the corruption and incompetence of the last 3 legislative sessions would be an issue, he's got enough incompetence of his own to deal with.
7:13AM SEP 3RD 2013
it doesn't matter who he picks he wouldn't win re election. if he did pick thrasher the corruption and incompetence of the last 3 legislative sessions would be an issue, he's got enough incompetence of his own top deal with.
6:24AM SEP 3RD 2013
Why go to the Political Pool to fish for an appointee? He needs to get someone more like himself with executive experience. Senators, even the best of them, only talk about problems

Leave a Comment on This Story

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.