State of the State
9:50 am
Tue March 4, 2014

Scott To Deliver State Of The State Address

Gov. Rick Scott will kick off the 2014 legislative session Tuesday by asking legislators to approve his tax cut package and by asking to keep tuition rates low. 
Credit Office of Rick Scott

The governor’s fourth State of the State Address highlights the opening of the 60-day legislative session. Scott is expected to press for more than $500 million in tax and fee cuts he's seeking this year.  Susan McManus, a political scientist at the University of South Florida, says Scott delivers both the State of the State, and the unofficial kickoff of his 2014 re-election campaign. “That was the platform he initially ran on,” said McManus, “And when you run for re-election the scorecards come out, and people want to see whether you’ve done what you said you’re going to do.” The Republican governor also wants to roll back auto registration fees that were increased back in 2009 under then-Governor Charlie Crist – who’s seeking to challenge Scott for his old job. Crist faces Nan Rich in the Democratic primary, and is considered by observers and in recent polls as a heavy favorite for that party’s nomination.  Legislators are gearing up to cover everything from guns to gambling in this session. Gov. Scott may end up distancing himself from some issues, to avoid controversies that could harm his bid for re-election in the wake of consistently low poll numbers.  Scott spoke for 37 minutes last year; in 2012, he delivered a 34-minute State of the State.  McManus thinks he may spend more time on the podium this year, because he’ll likely cover the issues he’s been discussing – and his office has been leaking.  The State of the State Address – and the Democratic response -- will be carried live on WUWF beginning at ten o’clock Tuesday morning.