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>Hey, Newsmax: Put Up Or Shutup!


August 16, 2010

Hey, Newsmax:

Why don’t you do us all a favor and put up or shut up? You’ve shown that lies can change an election. Since you started your attack on Rick Scott, his numbers in the polls have dropped dramatically. You should be proud of yourselves.
You claim Scott left his company with over $300 million in earnings, but where’s the proof?You spout off this figure, but never have proven a thing. Where’s you substantiation? Now, I don’t have a problem with an owner of a company taking profits, but that seems a mite excessive so if you are going to say these things about anyone you have a moral obligation to cite your authority and give us the innocent readers, the taxpayers and voters, the figures from a certified accounting office or more than just your say so. You haven’t much credibility in my opinion.
But, hey, you have said a lot of disparaging things about Bill McCollum’s opponent in the gubernatorial race here in Florida. What’s in it for you to have a career politician in the statehouse? He is supported by every Bilderberger I know of. It’s about time we got an independent in as governor – someone who could help reduce taxes and expenses. McCollum is an attorney, not a businessman. He can’t and won’t cut taxes.
I have written you before without response. Is this the way good journalists like you react when challenged? Come forth with backup and clear the air if you intend to play like you are credible reporters and perhaps – who knows – I’ll be one of your biggest or staunchest supporters. You owe every one of us at least that. This goes for anyone there, including Mr. Kessler. 
Don White
A concerned citizen
Windermere, FL

— On Mon, 8/16/10,  wrote:

Subject: McCollum Gains Big: 12 Points Ahead of Scott
To: “”
Date: Monday, August 16, 2010, 7:35 PM
Breaking from
McCollum Gains Big: 12 Points Ahead of Scott
By Jim Meyers
Bill McCollum has opened a 12 percentage-point lead over Rick Scott in his campaign for the Republican nomination for governor in Florida, according to a new poll released by the Florida Chamber of Commerce.
The poll of likely Republican primary voters shows McCollum with 45 percent of the vote, Scott with 33 percent, and roughly 20 percent undecided.
Attorney General McCollum has a comfortable lead over businessman Scott among moderates, 48 percent to 27 percent, as well as conservatives — 43 percent to 36 percent, according to the polling firm, McLaughlin & Associates. He also has a huge lead over Scott among Hispanic voters, 52 percent to 21 percent.
A Mason-Dixon poll released last week showed McCollum leading Scott by four percentage points, as did a survey by the Florida Medical Association.
McCollum’s comeback has amazed political observers and McCollum critics and supporters alike. Some earlier surveys had him trailing Scott by double digits, and as recently as Aug. 4, a Mason-Dixon poll showed Scott leading McCollum by 37 percent to 31 percent.
Voters evidently are becoming increasing concerned about Scott’s highly questionable business dealings and his refusal to release a deposition he gave in regard to a lawsuit alleging fraudulent practices at a healthcare company he now heads.
The new allegations likely remind voters of fraudulent practices uncovered at Scott’s former company, Columbia/HCA, the nation’s largest hospital chain.
In 1997, Scott was forced to resign as CEO of the firm while it was being investigated for massive Medicare and Medicaid fraud. The FBI launched a multistate probe that led to the firm pleading guilty to criminal charges of overbilling the government.
It remains the largest Medicare fraud case in U.S. history, and ended with Columbia/HCA paying a record $1.7 billion in fines, penalties and damages.
Scott, who walked away from the company with $310 million, accepted responsibility for what occurred at Columbia and said he had learned “hard lessons” from the case.
But Scott is once again under pressure, this time for his role at Solantic — a chain of about 30 walk-in Florida clinics he co-founded after leaving Columbia/HCA — as the company, ironically, faces an allegation of billing irregularities involving Medicare.
Two physicians who worked for Solantic filed lawsuits claiming the company repeatedly used their names and medical license information without their permission. Both suits have been settled.
One suit, by Dr. Randy Prokes, also claimed that Solantic improperly billed Medicare when a nurse practitioner rather than a doctor saw a patient.
Scott gave a videotaped deposition regarding one of the lawsuits six days before announcing his candidacy for governor, but he has rebuffed calls for the release of the deposition, saying “it’s a private matter.”
“Scott’s negatives have been steadily growing over the past several weeks, and McCollum now has better image ratings among Republican primary voters than Scott does,” the Tarrance Group, which conducted the poll for the Florida Medical Association, said in a statement.
“Scott’s ability to compete for the remaining undecided vote has grown extremely difficult.”
Scott’s campaign seems undeterred, and will likely spend over $50 million of his own money in an effort to snag a victory.
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