Republican Rick Scott isn't the only health care executive in the gubernatorial race anymore. Democratic candidate Brian Moore, with more than 20 years in the HMO managed care industry, is in the race, too -- promising to offer Democratic voters a choice and taking swings at state CFO Alex Sink.
Based out of Spring Hill, Moore ran for Congress in 2002 and 2004, ran against U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson in 2006 and, in 2008, was the presidential nominee of the Socialist Party. Calling himself more liberal, more progressive, more left-leaning than Sink, Moore said on Wednesday that he offered Florida Democrats a real choice.
I will embolden the rank and file Democrats and give them the courage to vote their principles, said Moore.
Moore said that the economy and employment were the biggest issue of his campaign. Jobs, jobs, jobs -- thats the real issue, he said. He also stressed his long-standing opposition to oil drilling and called for state ownership of banks and credit unions, pointing to success in North Dakota.
Moore filed late in the election cycle and he said that was on purpose. We intentionally laid low, he said. We wanted a two-man race.
Since other candidates did not qualify for the ballot or dropped out of the Democratic primary to run with no party affiliations, Moore got the two-man race he wanted. He tore into Sink, saying her credentials in banking were a problem, claiming that the bank she worked for helped lead Florida into record high unemployment and mortgage foreclosures.
Asked why he entered the race, Moore said, It was the fact that the Democratic Party would anoint someone from the industry that caused havoc to our nation and state.
With Sink as his only opponent, Moore said there was a window of opportunity for his campaign.
There is a lot of resentment in the Democratic Party about her, said Moore. She fluctuated quite a bit on class size and oil drilling in the Gulf. He contrasted that with his opposition to oil drilling in the Gulf as early as his congressional bids in 2002 and 2004.
She is not an attractive candidate, not a very well-known candidate, said Moore. He hammered Sink for not coming out clearly on the issues. She doesnt say much and what she does say is nebulous.
As an independent candidate with the backing of the Green Party, Moore pulled almost 20,000 votes in 2006 when he focused on ending the war in Iraq. As the Socialist presidential candidate, Moore pulled more than 400 votes from Florida in 2008.
Moore said that his campaign would launch a website in the next week. Were going to make it simple and clear, but it will be enough to differentiate our campaign with Alex Sinks and give Democrats a real choice, said Moore.
Moore added that he was looking forward to running television and radio ads. For me, its really just starting, he said.
Reach Kevin Derby at email@example.com, or at (850) 727-0859.