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A picture of then-candidate Rick Scott's adopted yellow lab Reagan, before Scott gave the dog back
This is the dog Rick Scott named Reagan before he gave the dog back for being a dog
Let us take a moment to appreciate this little bit of classic Republican smugness:
Commenters were ecstatic, congratulating Scott for getting a rescue dog instead of a purebred like Bo, the Portuguese water dog President Barack Obama adopted in 2009. And friends saluted the dog’s name, an homage to former President Ronald Reagan.
Those would be the gleeful Facebook commenters who named the rescue dog adopted oh so nobly by then-candidate for Florida governor, Rick Scott. They sure were proud of their guy, really sticking it to President Barack Obama and his elitist purebred dog. A real America-lovin' dog owner gets a manly rescue dog and names it Reagan, doggone it! So there!

This would be a mind-numbingly stupid enough story if it ended there, but of course it doesn't. Oh no. Because Scott abandoned Reagan shortly after he moved his family into the governor's mansion because it turned out that his rescue dog was—and brace yourselves, because this is shocking—a rescue dog.

“He was a rescue dog,” Scott said, “and he couldn’t be around anybody that was carrying anything, and so he wouldn’t get better.”

Scott said Reagan never bit anyone but “scared the living daylights” out of people at the mansion. He said one kitchen employee threatened to quit and photographer Eric Tournay was frightened when the dog “barked like crazy” every time he saw him with a camera.

For those who want to adopt a pet from a shelter for-non-photo-op-publicity-stunt purposes, it's pretty common knowledge that a rescued animal may have been neglected or abandoned or even abused, and may have some behavioral problems that require extra love and patience and attention from their adopted families. But when the reason for adopting a rescue dog is to score some cheap political points with a few pictures on Facebook, yes, it's easy to understand why a rescue dog that is, you know, a rescue dog could fast become an inconvenient burden that, once the election is over, no longer serves a purpose.

So where is Reagan now? After an intrepid reporter asked, "Hey, whatever happened to that dog of yours?" and Scott's staff scrambled to find out, we were informed that Reagan, who has gone back to his original name of Pluto, is apparently running free with Mitt Romney's poor strapped-to-the-roof-of-a-car dog Seamus on a horse ranch somewhere in Florida. Uh huh.

Meanwhile, the president's adopted purebred is still living with the Obama family in the White House. And he has never been strapped to the roof of a car.

11:35 AM PT: On Puget Sound nails it:

Sometimes despite the best intentions, a governor just doesn't work out and you have to give him back. Maybe some states just shouldn't have governors if they're not prepared to deal with behavioral issues.

Originally posted to Kaili Joy Gray on Wed Jan 16, 2013 at 10:52 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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