© 2023 WFSU Public Media
WFSU News · Tallahassee · Panama City · Thomasville
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Scott, GOP Defend Trade Mission Successes, House Dems Remain Skeptical

Governor Rick Scott and the state's Republican Party are defending the successes of his trade missions, particularly Scott's second trade mission abroad to Canada a couple of years ago.

While he believes there may be good reason for the trade missions abroad, House Democratic Leader Perry Thurston says he’d like to see some “empirical data” about just how beneficial these trips are that Governor Rick Scott has led. And, Monday, the Republican Governor says he only has “one message” for those who doubt the successes of his trips so far.

“With regard to our trade missions, it’s absolutely working. My slogan, when I ran for Governor, was Let’s get to work, and now it’s clearly working. And, it’s working across the state,” said Scott.

Scott made those remarks following the announcement that Canadian Security firm, GardaWorld Cash Services, brought 500 jobs to Florida, after it moved its headquarters from California to Boca Raton. Scott says that’s five times the amount it initially said during the Canada trip two years ago.

And, Republican Party of Florida Spokeswoman Susan Hepworth also followed up with an e-mailed response:

Here’s your empirical data, @RepThurston93. #ItsWorking GardaWorld Relocated U.S. headquarters to Boca Raton from California ANTICIPATED # jobs created: 100 ACTUAL # jobs created: 500

But, Mark Hollis, Spokesman for the Democratic Leader, says the proof still remains to be seen.

“Well, I haven't had a chance to speak specifically to Leader Thurston about this response, but I think the question he’d [Thurston] be asking is: Is this decision as a result of the travel? Or was this business making the decision and the Governor is trumpeting his success that would have otherwise have occurred without his travel? Perhaps not, but taxpayers deserve that kind of explanation and evidence,” said Hollis.

Meanwhile, the Governor is readying for two more trips abroad, the Paris Air Show in France in June and a trip to Japan in the fall.

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on twitter @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.