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Miami Dolphins assembling political team with Giuliani, Obama campaign experience


The Miami Dolphins have been assembling a political team behind the scenes to handle what would be a sprint of a campaign for a May referendum to approve a potential, partly taxpayer funded deal to renovate Sun Life Stadium.

Topping the list of names is Michael McKeon of New York, who worked as communications director for former Gov. George Pataki, advised former Mayor Rudy Giuliani's presidential campaign and helped sitting Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Also in talks with the Dolphins are two veterans of President Barack Obama's Florida reelection campaign last year: campaign chief Ashley Walker and spokesman Eric Jotkoff. Jotkoff has already been handling some of the Dolphins' communications.

The football team has so far kept on almost all of the local political operatives, many of them tied to former Miami-Dade Mayor Alex Penelas, who is also advising the team. The locals helped the Dolphins garner the support of a majority of Miami-Dade commissioners. Only one operative has bowed out of the effort: Jesse Manzano-Plaza, who worked as County Mayor Carlos Gimenez's campaign manager last year.

Commissioners would have to vote in early April, at the latest, to set a potential May 14 referendum on any stadium proposal. State law requires Miami-Dade to notice a special election five weeks before it takes place, according to the elections department. Some preparations must begin about two months before each election, so the department is already testing voting equipment and plans to reach out to poll workers and polling place operators in the coming week to gauge their availability, department spokeswoman Christina White said.


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Rick Scott should pay for this out of pocket.


Who is rick scott? Do you mean ross your teams owner?


If Ross had to pay all of it, it would not be the Miami Dolphins it would be the Ross Dolphins.


using are money like always

A voter

I am glad the Dolphins are spending all this money it is good for our economy. But the reality is no matter how much they spend it will not pass, the dophlins own the stadium and they should pay for any upgrades. I don't know anyone who would vote for this, not even Dolfans.


If you live in Miami who cares!!!! IT doesn't affect you! Just tourists


@ Alex you are absolutely right it is a 1 percent hotel tax and 3 million a year in tax breaks. The Dolphins are not locked to the city and in theory could move the team if they so choose. Getting this stadium upgrade would lock them to the city once again and with how good free agency is looking season ticket sales have skyrocketed. I can't wait to get down to florida and see my Dolphins while paying a slight increase in my hotel tax.

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