Tuesday, January 14, 2014

CHEERLEADING SQUAD: Gov. Rick Scott appoints Carlos Lopez-Cantera to Lt. Governor position, wagons circle

Posted on Tue, Jan 14, 2014 at 10:58 AM

So, if you're the type of wonk who keeps your ear to the Tallahassee news wire even while sleeping, by now you're aware that yesterday Gov. Rick Scott appointed eight-year House veteran and current Miami-Dade property appraiser Carlos Lopez-Cantera to the hallowed (read: meaningless) position of Lt. Governor. This comes after the post has been vacant for the better part of year in the wake of Jennifer Carroll's consultagamble scandal. People - including Lopez-Cantera - are already talking about how this will help the tongue-tied governor communicate better with minorities, because the new Lt. Governor is BILINGUAL and HISPANIC and can therefore do the Spanish-language media junket as a proxy. Hooray! Democrats, naturally, are clawing away at the announcement. “Carlos Lopez-Cantera is the poster child for what is wrong with Tallahassee today, an ultra-partisan career politician who spent his time in Tallahassee putting big corporations and wealthy special interests ahead of middle class families. By choosing a partisan product of the pay-to-play culture of Tallahassee in Lopez-Cantera as Florida’s Lt. Governor, Rick Scott is proving that he is exactly the type of politician he promised he would never be — more interested in scoring political points than commonsense solutions to the problems facing Florida,” said Florida Democratic Party Chair Allison Tant in a statement. Charlie Crist's people, meanwhile - who are sorta Democrats? - are pretending they didn't even hear the announcement. "Our campaign is focused on putting the people back in charge and protecting the middle class from four more years of Rick Scott’s extreme partisanship,” said Kevin Cate, a spokesperson for the campaign in his own statement. But the funniest part is how this is playing among Republican legislators and local leaders, who are all basically being asked to be talking heads for their great bald leader these days for just about every announcement he makes. Seriously, if a swimming pool is installed somewhere in Palatka, Scott's team reaches out for testimonials about how that pool will save the world. Below is the roundup from the Governor's office this morning in the wake of this latest drowning pool. See if you can spot any honesty:


Florida Leaders Applaud Governor Scott’s Appointment of Carlos Lopez-Cantera as Lieutenant Governor

  Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush said, "I know how important it is to choose a Lieutenant Governor who shares your vision for improving Florida and reforming government. Governor Scott's selection of Carlos Lopez-Cantera is a great pick for Floridians. I applaud Governor Scott on his choice and wish my friend Carlos the best of luck as he continues to serve the people of Florida in this exciting new position.”   Marco Rubio, U.S. Senator from Florida, said, "Carlos is a great friend and a phenomenal choice to be Florida's lieutenant governor. I've known Carlos for three decades and have cherished his friendship and wise counsel. Throughout his service in the Florida House, he was an indispensable player in advancing a conservative agenda and fighting Charlie Crist's job-killing policies. Rick Scott has made a great decision for Florida and is lucky to have Carlos on his team.”   Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen said, “Carlos will be an effective Lieutenant Governor and a tremendous leader for the State of Florida. His service in the Florida House was marked by dedication to his community and working to get results for all Floridians. As Property Appraiser, he has streamlined local government and made his office more responsive and accessible for all. Carlos is a great friend and is a valuable addition to Team Florida.”   Congressman Mario Diaz Balart said, “Governor Scott made a wise choice today. Carlos Lopez-Cantera brings a record of integrity, principled leadership and a wide breath of experience to the job of Lieutenant Governor. Carlos Lopez-Cantera has made our community proud and will make the whole state proud.”   Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam said, “Governor Scott made a solid choice in appointing Carlos Lopez-Cantera as his Lieutenant Governor. As a state legislator, he was a driving force in reducing taxes on businesses and consumers. He was a principled conservative who served Florida well during some of the greatest challenges our state has faced. Carlos Lopez-Cantera is an outstanding leader in our state who will bring energy, passion and wise counsel to the Governor’s office.”   Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater said, “This is a great day for the people of Florida who are getting a tremendous leader and generous public servant as their next Lieutenant Governor. Carlos Lopez-Cantera’s proven commitment to excellence both as a business owner and dedicated public servant make him an excellent choice to support Governor Scott’s vision for our state.  I look forward to working with Governor Scott and Lieutenant Governor Lopez-Cantera as we continue to make Florida the best state in the country to live.”   Dean Cannon, former Speaker of the Florida House, said, “Carlos Lopez-Cantera is an outstanding choice to be Florida’s Lieutenant Governor. Having served with him for eight years in the Florida House, including his time as Majority Leader, he is both a colleague and friend, and I know first-hand the type of leader Carlos is. His honesty, intelligence, and loyalty make him the perfect choice to serve alongside Governor Scott.  The people of Florida will be well served with Carlos as their Lieutenant Governor.”   Senate President Don Gaetz said, “Carlos Lopez-Cantera is a passionate conservative and a dedicated family man who will serve the State of Florida and the Governor with honor and integrity. He is a well-respected leader who maintains strong relationships with the business community, local and community leaders, legislators and constituents. I have no doubt his breadth of legislative experience will help Governor Scott move his priorities forward. I look forward to working with our new Lt. Governor and with Governor Scott during the 2014 Legislative Session as we strive to reduce the burden of taxes and fees facing Florida’s families.”   House Speaker Will Weatherford said, “I am confident that as Florida’s new Lieutenant Governor, Carlos Lopez-Cantera will have the same commitment to serve Florida families that he did as a leader in the Florida legislature when he championed key reforms. I applaud Governor Scott in his choice of Carlos, and look forward to working with the Governor and Lieutenant Governor as we continue to work toward ensuring every Floridian has the opportunity to succeed.”   Senator and President-Designate Andy Gardiner said, “As we approach the 2014 legislative session, I look forward to working with Governor Scott and Lieutenant Governor Cantera as we focus on economic development, providing our children with a great education, and keeping Florida the best state in the country to call home.”   Representative and Speaker-Designate Steve Crisafulli said, “Governor Scott made a great choice by selecting Carlos Lopez-Cantera as Florida’s next Lieutenant Governor. Carlos has proven to be a tireless advocate for the families of our state, and I know that he will be a valuable asset to the citizens of Florida.”   Majority Leader Lizbeth Benacquisto said, “I congratulate Carlos Lopez-Cantera on being appointed Lt. Governor. As the House Majority Leader, he demonstrated strong leadership and unwavering resolve, and his efforts to provide meaningful property tax relief clearly showed his immense dedication to the hardworking people who call Florida home. A considerable amount of work lies ahead for our state, but I am confident Lt. Governor Lopez-Cantera and Governor Scott will work diligently as a team to forge ahead as Florida continues on the path to recovery.”   Senator Tom Lee, Senate Majority Whip said, “Governor Scott deserves credit for taking the time necessary to find the best person to be our next Lieutenant Governor. Carlos Lopez-Cantera has a record of service to Florida and I am sure he will continue to serve with integrity in his new position as he supports Governor Scott in creating jobs and opportunities for businesses.”   Senator John Thrasher said, “Carlos Lopez Cantera will make a fine Lieutenant Governor. I am confident Governor Scott found the right person to help advance Florida’s economic momentum, and ensure that all Florida students can get a great education. I look forward to working with Governor Scott and Lieutenant Governor Cantera during the upcoming legislative session, and throughout the year, and we continue to make Florida the best state in the nation to live and raise a family.”   Senator Jack Latvala said, “Carlos Lopez-Cantera and Governor Scott are going to make a great team in finding more ways to help Floridians. Carlos has served his constituents well in previous leadership positions. I look forward to seeing what ideas he brings to the table in the coming months and look forward to working together.”   Senator Joe Negron said, “I applaud Governor Scott in his selection of Carlos Lopez Cantera to be Florida’s next Lieutenant Governor. Throughout his career, Carlos has proven to be a great leader and public servant for Florida families. I look forward to working with Lieutenant Governor Cantera, and Governor Scott in the upcoming legislative as we continue to focus on creating jobs and opportunities for Floridians.”   Senator Anitere Flores said, “Governor Scott has made a great selection for Lieutenant Governor with Carlos Lopez-Cantera. Carlos will be effective as a liaison to local government officials and will help create more ideas about how to cut taxes for families throughout the state. I look forward to working with him.”   Senator Rene Garcia said, “I was pleased to learn Governor Scott selected Carlos Lopez-Cantera, a well-respected, public servant, as our next Lieutenant Governor. Carlos will help advance Governor Scott’s job creating agenda and I look forward to working with them both during the upcoming session.”   Senator Oscar Braynon II said, “Carlos Lopez Cantera is a good friend and good man. I am confident that he will serve the Governor well this year. As a former legislator, Carlos knows the value of the legislative branch and the role the minority party plays in a vibrant democracy.”   Representative Seth McKeel said, “Florida’s real estate market has continued to rebound because of leaders like Carlos Lopez-Cantera and his work as property appraiser in Miami-Dade County. I support Governor Scott’s selection of Carlos for Lieutenant Governor, and know they will both continue to work diligently to lower the cost of doing business in Florida.”   Representative Jose Oliva said, “I am proud to see Carlos Lopez-Cantera, my colleague from South Florida, be selected to continue his tenure of public service as Florida’s next Lieutenant Governor.  Carlos has successfully served the people of Miami as property appraiser, and I know he will continue to honorably serve our entire state by helping Governor Scott cut taxes and create opportunities for Florida families.”   Representative Frank Artiles said, “I’m thankful Governor Scott selected someone who shares our common goal of wanting to improve Florida’s business economy. As legislator and as property appraiser, Carlos has worked to reduce property tax bills in Miami-Dade County, and I know he will continue to work to cut taxes for all Florida families as Lieutenant Governor.”   Representative Eddy Gonzalez said, “I commend the Governor Scott for choosing Carlos Lopez-Cantera as Lieutenant Governor. Carlos is and always has been someone who understands all of the important issues that we face as Floridians.  More importantly he was a leader when he served in the Florida House of Representatives. I couldn't think of a better person to lead us in that office as we move forward with the 2014 legislative session.”   Representative Jose Felix “Pepe” Diaz said, “During his service to Florida families as a leader in the House of Representatives and as Miami Dade Property Appraiser, Carlos Lopez-Cantera has focused on making Florida the best state in the nation. I know that he will continue this work in his new role as Florida’s Lieutenant Governor. I thank Governor Scott for appointing someone who has a proven track record of putting Florida families first, and for serving our state with honesty and integrity.”   Representative Erik Fresen said, “Carlos Lopez-Cantera has a record of successfully representing the interests of South Florida residents as a member of the Florida House of Representatives and as Miami-Dade Property Appraiser, and will diligently represent our whole state alongside Governor Scott as our new Lieutenant Governor.  Carlos is a capable businessman and will continue to work diligently keeping in mind the needs of all Floridians.”   Mayor of Miami Carlos Gimenez said, “I have worked with Carlos Lopez-Cantera on many important issues and look forward to working to with him in his new role as Lieutenant Governor.  I appreciate Governor Scott appointing a candidate who has such a rich history of service to Florida and commitment to continually improving our state’s business climate.”   Miami-Dade County Commission Chairwoman Rebeca Sosa said, “Carlos Lopez-Cantera has a history of serving Miami-Dade County and we are glad Governor Scott selected such a prominent and well-respected member of our community to be Florida’s next Lieutenant Governor.”   Miami-Dade County Commissioner Esteban “Steve” Bovo said, “I was fortunate to work with Carlos during our time in the legislature so I know about his commitment to the families of Florida.  Like Governor Scott, he believes in creating opportunities for every Floridian and has a proven track-record of tax reform.  I appreciate Governor Scott choosing a candidate that shares such an important vision for Florida.”   Miami-Dade School Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho said, “I look forward to continuing to work with Governor Scott and Carlos Lopez-Cantera in his new role as Lieutenant Governor.  A good job starts with a great education and I am confident they will deliver on the promise of quality education and career preparation for future generations.”  

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