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Gov. Scott chides Weatherford on teacher pay raise issue

Gov. Rick Scott's top priority in the current legislative session is a  $2,500 across the board pay raise for teachers, and on Tuesday he took the gloves off and pointedly called out a fellow Republican, House Speaker Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, for not embracing the idea.

"In  the House, here's what I find interesting. My understanding is the speaker's against the pay raise for classroom teachers," Scott told reporters in a news conference in his office. "But in contrast, he does
across the board pay raises for state workers. Now, look, state workers deserve to be paid fairly. That's why, in my budget, I said they  should get a bonus because of unemployment coming down."

Just in  case anybody missed the point that he was putting heat on Weatherford, Scott repeated the point. "I find it interesting that the speaker's against the pay raise for classroom teachers, but he's okay with an
across the board pay raise for state workers and no performance funding
for universities," he said.

Scott and Weatherford also are at odds over Medicaid expansion, which the governor supports and the
speaker opposes. Weatherford was a featured speaker Tuesday at a Capitol  rally by Americans for Prosperity, which has criticized Scott for supporting Medicaid expansion.

-- Steve Bousquet

Comments

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Ugly

Jacksonville GOP is showing a lot of discontent. A new Chairman may rise.

Frank

How soon before Scott throws Lenny Curry under the bus? It's a matter of time.

Roger D Parrish

I really don't understand 2,500.00 for teachers, what about the other dedicated state employees that haven't had a pay raise in years?? Looks like a reelection ploy for votes. I really thought Governor Scott was what we needed in this state. I am now sorry that I voted for him, maybe if he continues to tell himself ( Its Working) maybe he can convince himself, I'm not buying it. I truly believe he is the worst Governor this state has had in years. Don't pic groups for political gain, do the right thing for all the people in this great state Governor Scott, we deserve better.

B. HALBEISON

I find it very interesting that the majority of state employees work directly for Governor Scott and he only wants to give us a onetime bonus that isn’t factored in our retirement, yet teachers have a great expansive electorate base for re-election purposes, hint, hint. We state employees and teachers should not find ourselves at odds over this, if the Governor treats people who works directly for him like this, what kind of treatment do the teachers expect to get after he uses them for re-election and I voted for him last time. Be strong Speaker Weatherford!!!

PHD

This is what happens when you get full control of government - you dont have enough people on the other side to attack, so you turn on each other. Its why Democrats lost the state in the 1990s and why Republicans will lose the state within the decade - at least one legislative chamber. It also doesnt help its run by a bunch of 30 year olds with very little life experience.

The Republican legislature today is unrecognizeable from the one led by Dan Webster, John Thrasher and Toni Jennings. Its full of entitled members who never had to fight a tough electon - members who just had hundreds of thousands of dollars handed to them by the Republican Party and special interests only to preserve power. Members elected only because they outspent opponents 5-1. Members who have become the career politicians the Republicans despised in the 1980s, prompting term limits.

Now, to further complicate matters, an entirely new strain of Republicans is emerging, an anti-business strain of Repuiblicans supported by Trial lawyers who have coopted scores of younger house leaders. Yet another ingredient for Republican self destruction.

This emerging schizm between Rick Scott and Will Weatherford is a small piece of whats to come in the future. Someone is advising the Governor that in order to improve his approval ratings, he must post up against the Legislature - which has approval rating at about a third of his. Probably not bad advice. The problem for Governor Scott is that its likely not going to be enough.

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