Already wildly unpopular, Florida Gov. Rick Scott is in the doghouse again.
In 2010, when Scott ran in the Republican primary, he announced with pride that his family had adopted a rescued Labrador retriever. And with the help of a Facebook contest soliciting ideas, the family decided on a name for the golden Labrador.
"The Scott family is proud to announce that the name (chosen by you) for their newly adopted pup is Reagan!" a message posted on Scott's Facebook said. "Thanks to everyone who participated in the fun contest!" The dog's new name was an homage to late President Ronald Reagan.
Later on, however, inquiries into the whereabouts of Reagan (the dog) were met with silence and annoyance by current and former campaign communications directors, according to the Tampa Bay Times. The dog hadn't been seen since 2011.
Scott's various communications aides said they were "too busy" to find out where the dog had gone.
On Monday, the Times finally had a chance to press Scott about where the dog had gone.
"He was a rescue dog,'' Scott told Times reporters
, "and he couldn't be around anybody that was carrying anything, and so he wouldn't get better."
The Scott family had given the dog back to its prior owner because the dog "scared the living daylights" out of visitors to the governor's mansion. Reagan was actually returned one month after the Scott family moved to Tallahassee when the governor took office.
However, the family adopted a second rescue lab named Tallee, who Scott said was "the neediest dog."
A late December poll showed that 45 percent of Florida voters disapproved of the job Scott had down so far, with only 36 percent of voters approving. Additionally, 53 percent of Republicans said they'd prefer another candidate to run against Scott in 2014.
After the Times spoke with Scott, a spokesperson called the newspaper to say Reagan was returned to All Pets Grooming and Boarding in Naples, Fla.
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