Chuck on the right side
THIS IS A BLOG THAT TRIES TO APPEAL TO THE AVERAGE CONSERVATIVE CITIZEN AND HAS NO AGENDA OTHER THAN TELLING THE TRUTH AS WE SEE IT.
To listen to the Sen. Bill Nelson and the Democrat Party ads on radio and T.V., and an editorial in the Sun-Sentinel, they are charging that Gov. Rick Scott acted in a criminal way in the Columbia/HCA fraud case (the same charges were made 4 years ago, and he was re-elected as governor of Florida). Is that a fair and reputable charge to level at Gov. Scott again in this campaign for senator?
First off, Rick Scott was CEO of Columbia/HCA which was fined by the federal government, $1.7 billion for Medicare fraud. The Nelson ad and the Sun-Sentinel editorial mentions that, but never mentions that Scott was never questioned by the federal government and was never charged with a crime in that fraud case. Scott, at that time, said he had no knowledge of the fraudulent activity and said he would have acted to stop it if he had known. Scott was never charged with any wrongdoing. To imply otherwise, is a deceitful statement.
Also in that ad by Nelson, and in the Sun-Sentinel endorsement of Bill Nelson, it mentions the fact that Rick Scott took the 5th Amendment 75 times in order to not to admit committing a crime in that fraud case.
Is that Bill Nelson ad and the Sun-Sentinel editorial, true or not? Did Scott commit a crime and did he invoke his 5th Amendment right 75 times to avoid incriminating himself?
According to two prominent independent fact checking organizations, FactCheck.org, and Politifact.com, they found that Scott was never officially asked questions by the federal investigators in the criminal case of Columbia/HCA and he was never charged with a crime. As to the 75 times that Scott took the 5th on July, 2000 (3 years after he left the company in 1997), it was in relation to a totally unrelated civil case between Nevada Communications Corp. and Columbia/HCA, with Nevada claiming that Columbia/HCA had violated the terms of a contract. It had nothing to do with the criminal case. Under advice of his lawyer in a deposition in the civil case, Scott exerted his 5th Amendment Constitutional right against answering questions in the pending case between Nevada and HCA. The ad in question, by Nelson and the Democrats, does not make clear in which case Scott took the 5th. The ad implied that Scott took the 5th in the criminal case, which was totally and factually untrue.
So knowing the facts as they actually are, you could say that Gov. Scott was and is the victim of a knowingly untrue ad and editorial whose main purpose was to impugn the honesty and integrity of his character. This ad and editorial should be given “4 Pinocchio's” for outright deceit.
Vote for or against Gov. Scott on the basis of his performance in office, not on some deceitful ad put out by his opponent claiming that he is a crook. Maybe Bill Nelson was looking in the mirror?
Conservative commentary by Chuck Lehmann