Dear Bill McCollum: Everybody is Trying to Buy Florida, Including You
While addressing the Duval County Republican Executive Committee on Monday evening, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill McCollum charged that his chief rival for the GOP nomination was attempting to buy the office of governor.
Multi-millionaire Rick Scott has spent heavily from his own funds to fuel his aggressive campaign.
McCollum fired up the crowd by saying that he was sending Rick Scott a message "that Florida is not for sale."
Sure, whatever you say.
What's ridiculous about McCollum's statement is that he's raised more than $8 million directly and millions more through 527 groups. The largest chunk of that money is being pumped into television ads smearing Scott and promoting McCollum.
Scott is attempting to buy the office with millions of dollars of his own money. McCollum is attempting to buy the office with millions of dollars of other people's money.
And Alex Sink is doing the same thing.
Does it really matter?
I guess it depends on how you look at it. If Scott is elected, he won't really owe favors to any donors, while McCollum will spend much of his first term paying back those who've given so generously to his campaign.
You don't think someone drops $100,000 on a 527 group to run negative TV commercials out of the goodness of their heart, do you?
The only candidate who isn't trying to "buy" the office is Bud Chiles, who's independent candidacy has raised very little money during his first few months in the race. Of course Chiles is attempting to win the election by trading on his famous name, so maybe he's "buying" it in a different way.
What would be really nice is if these candidate would put away their swords, stop saying laughable things like "Florida is not for sale" and actually just debate each other based on the facts.
But it's not going to happen.
At least the first round of this nonsense will be over in a few days.