Florida politics just keeps getting weirder. Gov. Rick Scott was scheduled to debate challenger Charlie Crist Wednesday night, but he refused to come on stage because Crist had a small fan under his podium to keep him comfortable.
The debate moderators at CBS Miami seemed shocked, wondering aloud what to do for several minutes until Scott finally consented to join Crist on stage. Scott apparently told the hosts that the debate rules banned fans from the stage.
“We have been told Governor Scott will not be participating in this debate,” CBS moderator Elliott Rodriguez said. “Now, let me explain what this is all about. Governor Crist has asked to have a fan, a small fan, placed underneath his podium. The rules of the debate that I was shown by the Scott campaign said that there should be no fan. Somehow there is a fan there and for that reason, ladies and gentlemen, Governor Scott will not join us for the debate.”
The announcement was met with jeers and boos from the crowd.
Toward the end of the debate, the moderators asked Crist why he brought out the fan. “Why not? Is there anything wrong with being comfortable?” Crist replied. Scott, when asked why he delayed coming out, said, “We feared he wasn’t going to show up. So why come out until he’s ready?”
There’s just one problem: Crist was already on stage when Scott refused to come out. So they went from a really bad excuse for not showing up to a flat-out lie. Nice going, Mr. Scott. You managed to put both feet in your mouth at the same time.