Will RickScott.com Have a New Owner?


Rick Scott could lose ownership of his own website.

At 6:35pm on November 9th, 2017, the auction for rickscott.com will expire and someone will be its proud new owner – possibly not Gov. Rick Scott.

The real danger of losing the domain is its takeover by an unfriendly body, like an anti-Scott PAC. The result would be a website with highly negative material of the Florida governor run by his enemies and, most likely, frequently visited due to its powerful Search Engine Optimization advantage.

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The practice of purchasing political domains is part of a well-known “get rich quick” scheme. The idea is to purchase domains for politicians who will eventually need them.

The best example of this was las year when 66-year-old retired factory worker Janet LaCelle purchased a slew of domains that fit with Hillary Clinton’s presidential run. For roughly $15 each, LaCelle purchased such domains as ElectHillary.com more than a decade ago.

In 2016, LaCelle attempted to sell those domains for thousands of dollars – many of which she sold successfully.

In her words, LaCelle explained that the hardest part about it was actually remembering to renew the domains each year. She lamented losing PresidentHillaryClinton.com one year for that reason, saying she “lost a good one.”

Hillary Clinton DNC 2016

Political campaigns or their associated PACs and supporters will also partake in the scramble for relevant domains. Nearly all of the ones for Bernie Sanders’s campaign contained positive images, such as speaches the candidate gave or light-hearted parodies pitching Sanders against the Bernie from “Weekend at Bernie’s.”

Of course, competitors also try to get their jabs in.

Last year, the Trump campaign famously benefited from a take-over of JebBush.com. As a result, the Florida governor’s website instantly redirected to Trump’s campaign site in what was the latest of many embarrassing moments for the Bush campaign.

Scott’s reticence appears to be due to a lack of awareness. It is uncommon for the domains of sitting governors to go un-renewed. Someone dropped the ball. Now, the Scott campaign will have to pay a minimum of $50,000 to get the domain back.

Should they fail, it could have a damaging effect on Scott’s political ambitions for 2018. Now term-limited from becoming Governor, Scott is expected to run for the U.S. Senate against current Senator Bill Nelson.

The race is expected to be extremely heated, with the Democrats throwing everything they have to defend their very vulnerable position in a state won by Republican Donald Trump in last year’s presidential race.