Dolphins owner avenges vote against stadium by trying to buy new legislators

And it’s on:

Stephen Ross, the Miami Dolphins owner who vowed to avenge his political loss in Tallahassee earlier this year, is recruiting candidates to run against two lawmakers who opposed using public dollars to partly fund a $350 million renovation to Sun Life Stadium, the Miami Herald has learned.

Ross’ political group, Florida Jobs First, is reaching out to potential candidates to pose primary challenges to GOP state Reps. Michael Bileca and Carlos Trujillo. They were perhaps the most strident opponents to the football club’s proposal, which died when the Florida House failed to take a floor vote on Dolphins-backed legislation.

The Miami Herald also notes that Florida house speaker Will Weatherford, who was instrumental in blocking the Dolphins deal and who Ross for some reason has steered clear of so far, yesterday appointed Trujillo to head the house’s economic development and tourism subcommittee. Since state elections aren’t until the end of next year, this “ensures that if the Dolphins intended pursue their legislative agenda again in Tallahassee in 2014, those efforts will go nowhere,” writes the Herald. But at least Ross will have something to keep him busy now.


6 comments on “Dolphins owner avenges vote against stadium by trying to buy new legislators

  1. I think the biggest surprise about this story is that there are politicians in Florida that haven’t been bought off yet.

  2. Ah, Democracy!

    Funny we keep trying to ‘export’ our version of democracy to other countries… I’m pretty sure they’ve had corrupt politicians on the take for at least as long as we have…

  3. I may be the only reader of this blog who votes for and has met Rep. Trujillo.
    An intelligent young man attentive to his constituents, not the standard bla bla bla pol.
    It would have been a lot easier to go with the flow and taken Ross’ money as most did.

  4. The way to do things is how they were done in Santa Clara – quietly work to elect a city council majority which is pro-professional sports and pro-spending public money on a stadium by recruiting candidates and providing loads of campaign money, then after those people are elected go after the votes needed to secure public funds for a stadium. (Santa Clara circa Nov 2006 after the election, within days the 49ers announced their intention to build a stadium in Santa Clara.) Then continue to support pro-stadium candidates for office to keep a city council which has a majority or unanimously will support whatever the professional sports team needs (Santa Clara elections Nov. 2010 and Nov. 2012.)

    Clearly, in Florida, they got it backwards. Congrats to the two Florida pols who aren’t in the pocket of pro-sports. May Floridians remain smart enough to continue to keep independent-minded politicians in office.

  5. I hope that the voters in Florida NEVER get a pro-stadium legislature in office. If you do, mark my words, you will forever be owned by the NFL team. The City of Santa Clara in California will forever be run for the sole benefit of the San Francisco 49ers … At any expense! So far, they bought the City Council, then boight an election, and now is ripping off our local entities and using Santa Clara as their own ATM machine. Spending OUR money without regards to fiscal responsibility. And to top it all … Not one media outlet will publicize their Al Davis-style of partnering (meaning lawsuit happy!) nor their unethical behavior and outright lies,

    Be smart Florida … Protect yourself, do not get trapped into the NFL quicksand.

  6. Ditto to comment @ 1:45am, & 2:44am….The ownership of the SF 49ers used underhanded shenanigans to get their Stadium in Santa Clara, & they also co-opted the local elected officials. Ownership basically “Lied” to the citizens of Santa Clara, & San Francisco in regards to the Stadium, but what goes around comes around Mr. York.