EAST MANATEE -- Rick Scott, the multimillionaire former hospital executive, brought his gubernatorial campaign to a breakfast gathering of the East Manatee Republican Club at Peridia this morning.
Scott called himself an "across-the-board conservative" who supports job creation, lower taxes and smaller government.
When 40 percent of Florida homeowners are "under water" with their mortgages -- owing more on their home than its worth, when unemployment is running at record levels, and when the public education is in trouble, a drastic change is needed, Scott said.
Many of the ills can be traced back to bad government, he said.
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Scott, who made his fortune as an entrepreneur, said Florida's governor should be the state's best salesman in persuading new business to come to Florida.
Scott did not mention the $1.7 billion fine for Medicare fraud that was assessed against Columbia/HCA or his involvement with that company.
Scott and Bill McCollum, Florida's attorney general, are the leading Republican candidates for governor. They face a primary election Aug. 24.
Scott is also scheduled to speak to the Argus Foundation today in Sarasota.