Friday, January 14, 2011

Scott regime: Who's in, who's out?

From Kenric Ward of Sunshine State News on Jan. 10:
As Rick Scott takes the reins of Florida government, some longtime political players find themselves marginalized or cut out of the decision-making loop altogether.

Though Republicans swept to victory in November, the clout of high-ranking, veteran party members has diminished as the outsider-governor shakes up the tradition-bound GOP power base.

Meantime, the stock of business interests is rising, as Scott quickly froze government regulations and fills key administration positions with unconventional appointees.

Veering sharply away from the center-left orientation of Charlie Crist, the former health-care executive is building a team more attuned to Jeb Bush's sensibilities. Indeed, several of Scott's transition advisers are Bushites.

But millionaire Scott is not kissing the former governor's ring as he charts his own course in Tallahassee.

While retaining a few Crist holdovers -- including policy and budget director Jerry McDaniel, general counsel Erik Figlio and executive staff director Dianne Moulton -- Scott is putting his own stamp on the affairs of state.

Instead of bowing to Bush or maintaining the status quo, Scott is relying heavily on his own inner circle of advisers. And, given his business background and deep skepticism of government, Scott's sense of "grass-roots" support is far different than his immediate predecessor's.

Here is a look at who's in, who's out, and who is in political purgatory under the Scott regime.


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