POLITICS
10/31/2012 01:11 pm ET

Mitt Romney, Rick Scott Compared In Priorities USA Action Ad

Priorities USA Action, a super PAC supporting the reelection of President Barack Obama, released an ad Wednesday running in Florida linking GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney to Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R).

"Mitt Romney and Rick Scott. Connect the dots," says a narrator. "Scott ran a company that paid a record fine for committing Medicare fraud. Then, as governor, Scott cut millions from healthcare."

"Romney was director of a company that stole millions from Medicare. Now, Romney’s plan would end Medicare as we know it. We’ve seen this picture before. Just connect the dots. If Mitt Romney wins, the middle class loses."

The ad is an obvious attempt to tie Romney, who holds a statistically insignificant lead in the state, to Scott, who has had a middling approval rating after riding a Tea Party wave to victory in 2010. The spot doesn't offer any evidence to tie them directly, but it instead compares their pasts.

Neither Romney or Scott have been personally implicated in the failures of their companies, but both presided over Medicare fraud. Romney was director of medical testing company Damon Corp., which his company, Bain Capital, bought. The Medicare fraud happened when he was director.

Scott started Columbia Hospital Corporation in 1987, and bought Hospital Corporation of America in 1994, merging the two companies into Columbia/HCA. Scott was forced out as CEO in 1997, less than four months after a Justice Department inquiry became public. He was never charged with a crime, but the company ultimately had to pay $1.7 billion for federal health care fraud.

A similar ad connecting Romney and Scott ran during the Florida primary last January, paid for by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

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