On the list of speakers was Jack Cassell, a local urologist, who once refused to treat patients who voted for Barack Obama and who spoke on “The Defeat of Obamacare.”
But the law would be upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court, a factor Scott cited in his decision to support a three-year expansion of Medicaid subject to approval by the Florida Legislature.
“I’m afraid Gov. Scott just turned off a lot of people,” Cassell said. “He’s really dug himself a hole.”
Sullivan is a doer with a take-charge personality, and she uses social media and email to stay in close touch with her fellow tea party members.
The day before Scott declared support for Medicaid expansion, she sensed that it was coming. She sent email blasts to her allies throughout Florida, urging them to try to change Scott’s mind.
One email alert read: “The governor needs to hear from you right now! He needs to understand that this would be the final straw and a complete betrayal of the patriot movement and conservative base that supported him.”
Scott knows his support for Medicaid expansion has hurt him politically. At a dinner Sunday where he was honored by a Republican women’s group, he defended his decision, saying that his only other option was to recommend rejection of federal Medicaid money, some of which is paid by Florida taxpayers.
“That was my rationale. I know it doesn’t make everybody happy,” Scott said. “I think it’s the right decision for the state.”
Eustis-area Republicans still have one piece of unfinished business with Scott.
They have invited him to be the guest of honor at the Lake County GOP’s Lincoln Day Dinner next fall, the party’s biggest fund-raising event. Scott has not yet accepted, and party activists are thinking of rescinding their invitation.