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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – With the race for Florida governor a dead heat, Rick Scott is preparing to spend millions of his own money to help finance his campaign through the home stretch.
“I’ll be investing,” Scott told CBS4’s Jim DeFede during an interview Wednesday morning aboard his campaign bus. “It’ll be a fraction of what we’ve raised.”
The Scott campaign has already spent $83 million during this expensive and contentious campaign. The governor refused to say how much of his personal fortune he’ll spend. Scott is estimated to be worth more than $200 million.
Scott had hoped he would not have to spend his own money this time around. In 2010, he poured more than $75 million into his race against Alex Sink. But with polls showing the race even and the Crist campaign getting help in recent weeks by California billionaire Tom Steyer, Scott has decided to dig into his own pockets.
“I’ve got to offset this smear campaign by this left-wing radical billionaire that’s friends of Charlie out of California,” Scott said.
Steyer has spent more than $12 million into Crist’s campaign. As CSB4 news partner the Miami Herald recently noted, “Steyer’s NextGen Climate political committee has launched an aggressive television assault on Scott, criticizing his administration’s handling of oil drilling in the Everglades, the nuclear fees charged by Duke Energy, and Scott’s strong support by the utility industry.”
Scott said the public will learn how much he’s going to spend on October 31 – four days before the election – when the contributions will become a public record. Asked to release them early, Scott said: “We’ll put our report out at the end of the month.”
He added he still has not determined how much he’ll put in.
“We’ll determine that as we deal with this smear campaign that this left wing radical billionaire is trying to invest with Charlie,” Scott said.
The full interview with Scott will air on CBS4 this Sunday at 8 am on Facing South Florida with Jim DeFede.
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