The U.S. Senate campaign for Republican Gov. Rick Scott is firing back at opposition with a new television commercial rebutting a Democratic group’s ad about Scott’s role in the 1990s Medicare fraud scandal involving the company he led, Columbia/HCA.

“Bill Nelson is confused again,” the new Scott commercial begins, continuing the Scott campaign’s theme of seeking to paint the 75-year-old Senator as mentally unreliable.

On Tuesday a Democratic political action committee supporting Nelson’s re-election, Majority Forward, launched a television commercial bringing up the HCA scandal. In that case, the federal government negotiated what was then the largest corporate criminal fine in a Medicare fraud case in history: $1.7 billion. Scott had been CEO of  Columbia/HCA but resigned in July 1997, less than four months after the federal investigation of HCA became public.

Scott’s new 30-second spot, “Responsibility,” seeks to set the record straight.

“When Rick Scott’s company was fined, 20 years ago, he took responsibility,” a narrator says. “And the company paid every penny it owed. That’s what strong leaders do. They take responsibility.”

Then the commercial tries to pivot to criticize Nelson for his own issues with Medicare.

The commercial cites

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