An activist group is running a radio ad in the Tampa Bay area questioning St. Petersburg-based state Sen. Jeff Brandes’ ethics.
The 60-second spot from Florida Strong is called “Let’s Make a (corrupt) Deal.” It attacks the Pinellas Republican for receiving campaign contributions from companies such as Duke Energy and insurance lobbyists, and then claims that he voted on issues on behalf of those companies at taxpayers expense.
It’s part of the advocacy group’s campaign for stronger ethics reform legislation, called “Got Ethics?” and calls on him to back stronger ethics reform legislation.
A national Democratic advocacy group has proclaimed Miami Republican Sen. Anitere Flores to be “The Queen of Corruption” in Florida because of her past work with the for-profit and unaccredited Doral College in Miami-Dade County.
In an online video this week — that declares her “Florida’s most corrupt politician” — Occupy Democrats takes Flores to task for her former job as president of the college and for supporting legislation that benefited Florida’s charter school industry.
The group alleges she “takes tax dollars meant for education and pockets them” for her own enrichment and those of her “friends.”
It is tempting to say these health and safety concerns for residents from Boca Raton to the Keys are new. They are not. For many years, FPL has stonewalled county and state regulators on the extent of its problems at Turkey Point related to its nuclear cooling system. The regional corporate powerhouse needed lobbyists and legislators to get its way. In the past Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, FPL found a twofer (two for one).
In 2012 Miami New Times gave Miguel Diaz de la Portilla the dubious distinction of best lobbyist: “When his clients can’t get their way at the county level, they can count on Diaz de la Portilla to use his influence in Tallahassee to fulfill their agendas there.”
Meet Senator Anitere Flores, a Florida politician who’s enriched herself with state funds that were supposed to go toward educating children.
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It has now been two weeks since a Miami-Dade County study found that FPL’s Turkey Point power plant is leaking radiation into Biscayne Bay. The Bay’s aquifer provides drinking water to more than three million people in South Florida, presenting health and safety concerns for residents from Boca Raton to the Keys. And yet, State Senator Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, who has actively worked on FPL’s behalf as a lobbyist, has been silent on this issue.
FloridaStrong – an independent advocacy and voter education group – announced today it will launch a “Got Ethics?” campaign to hold legislators accountable on issues of ethics and public corruption.
For the second year in a row, the Florida Legislature is poised to adjourn next week without passing real, meaningful ethics reform. Sen. Don Gaetz (R-Niceville) has introduced a set of bills (SB 582 and SB 686) that would crack down on the corruption and cronyism that runs rampant throughout the state of Florida. Yet, both pieces of legislation are currently sitting idle in Tallahassee.
Special interests have given Florida legislators over 28 million dollars since July. What are they getting in exchange for their money? A legislative agenda that works for them — not for you and me.
As pressure mounts to regulate corrupt for-profit colleges, reports continue to surface that highlight Florida legislators’ cozy relationships with the industry, including Florida State Representative Erik Fresen. It is no wonder the for-profit college industry honored Florida State Representative Erik Fresen (R-Miami) as “legislator of the year” with a record of fighting for their interests – not students.
On Friday, unaccredited for-profit schools Dade Medical College and the University of Southernmost Florida announced sudden closures of all of their campuses, leaving thousands of students and employees wanting answers. As the Miami Herald reported, the closure “has angered many students, who invested tens of thousands of dollars in their education and are now left with college credits that won’t transfer to community colleges and most other traditional schools.”
However, this comes as no surprise, as the for-profit juggernaut has a long history of abandoning its students, while taking care of politicians in powerful positions. Consider the following about State Senator Rene Garcia (R-Hialeah), State Senator Oscar Braynon (D-Miami Gardens) and State Representative Carlos Trujillo (R-Doral).
Per the Bradenton Herald, “Florida’s legislature cannot be trusted to uphold the constitution.” Learn more by watching FloridaStrong’s exclusive web video, “Cannot Be Trusted”, featuring local television news clips that aired the night that the Florida Supreme Court ruled that the Legislature violated the state constitution in 2012 in the drawing up of eight specific congressional districts.