Rick Scott's Team Paints Tom Steyer as Barack Obama's Cat's-Paw
Around the State
NextGen Climate, a liberal super-PAC backed by California businessman and billionaire Tom Steyer, came out swinging at Gov. Rick Scott on Monday, releasing a new TV ad attacking the governor for ties to Duke Energy. But Scott's team fired back, insisting Steyer and his PAC were going to bat for President Barack Obama.
Despite having made his fortune in part due to his investment in coal, Steyer is now backing alternative energy and using his money to defeat candidates who have questioned global warming. Steyer has publicly mulled spending around $10 million to defeat Scott this year.
The new ad from the PAC claims Scott took campaign donations from Duke Energy, giving that company contracts despite poor performance. The ad claims Scott took $500,000 from Duke Energy.
“With the stroke of a pen, Rick Scott failed to protect Florida consumers. letting Duke Energy charge customers billions for two power plants that don’t generate a single watt of energy,” the narrator says in the ad.
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But Scott’s team fired back on the new ad and one last week that claimed the governor had accepted $200,000 from the Collier family who own land for oil exploration near the Everglades, insisting the new ads actually should be directed at former Gov. Charlie Crist. Despite having spent most of his political life as a Republican, Crist is the favorite to win the Democratic primary on Tuesday and challenge Scott in November.
Scott’s camp noted that Crist had steered more than $500,000 from the Colliers to the GOP when he was a Republican. Scott’s team also pointed out that Crist approved building the nuclear power plants.
Matt Moon, a spokesman for the Scott campaign, fired back on Monday, trying to connect both Steyer and Crist to Obama.
“Steyer's new ads take a swipe at his Obama ally – Charlie Crist – by attacking contributions from the Collier family, who donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Crist, and attacking Rick Scott for protecting consumers after Crist left taxpayers on the hook,” Moon said on Monday. “Oops. While Rick Scott has fought to stop illegal drilling in Collier County and rein in utilities, Charlie Crist was busy flying to an environmental press conference on the plane of a serial polluter. More swings and misses by Obama's special-interest force Tom Steyer in Florida.”
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