The 2014 gubernatorial campaign has officially begun.
Never mind that Republican incumbent Gov. Rick Scott hasn't yet formally announced or filed to run for re-election, or that the Democrats still don't have a candidate the party is ready to rally around.
The Florida Democratic Party today launched its first salvo, an Internet campaign that will use paid advertising, social media and a new website to bash the governor. Party officials announced this morning they will be spending "tens of thousands" of dollars on advertising, though it sounds as if the social media blitz will be the main thrust.
The Republican Party of Florida has been out there much longer. For the past couple of months the party has been running a lower-key campaign, sans-paid advertising, to bash the likely frontrunner in the Democratic race for governor, former Republican and former governor Charlie Crist. The centerpiece of that campaign has been a daily press release blitz highlighting Crist's record as governor, called "This day in Crist-ORY."
As with Scott, he also has not yet announced or filed.
The 2014 gubernatorial election is in November 2014; the party primaries -- and both parties may have primaries in the governor's race -- would be in August.
The Democrats intend to talk about Scott's record with education spending, "corporate giveaways," that he has "disrespected Democrats," "disrespected new Americans," "not stood up for the middle class," and "has not stood up for the vulnerable," said Florida Democratic Party Chair Allison Tant.
"We have a governor who seriously wants to run from his record, and we're not going to let him," said FDP Executive Director Scott Arceneaux.