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Dolphins owner Stephen Ross' political group attacks Miami lawmakers -- again


FJF-02-105_print-2The billionaire owner of the Miami Dolphins has unleashed his second round of attacks against three Miami lawmakers he blames for standing in the way of a proposed $350 million renovation to Sun Life Stadium.

Stephen Ross, through his Florida Jobs First political group, launched new fliers Monday, the Miami Herald learned, targeting state Reps. Michael Bileca, Jose Felix Diaz and Carlos Trujillo, accusing the three Republicans of blocking jobs for South Florida residents.

The group mailed its first batch of fliers last month, shortly after Ross formed it, making good on his pledge to take an active role in Tallahassee politics following the football club's failure to get legislation passed to ask Miami-Dade voters to raise the hotel-tax rate to fund some of the stadium improvements.

The ballots received during the special election before it was called off showed the proposal failing among early voters. Mike Dee, the team's former CEO who left for the San Diego Padres earlier this month, said in May that the Dolphins do not intend to pay for any upgrades on their own.

Ross' campaign prompted a rebuke from leaders of the Florida Legislature, who blasted the real-estate developer and part-time Palm Beach County resident for going after the trio of Miami Republicans.

"The fact that there are people who are attacking members of your community, your representatives, because they stood on principle, is wrong," House Speaker Will Weatherford said in Miami last month. Ross has laid the blame of the Dolphins' failure squarely on the shoulders of the powerful Wesley Chapel Republican.

The latest fliers, mailed to voters in the legislators' districts, refer to generic jobs and make no mention of the Dolphins or the football club's failed Tallahassee effort.  FJF-02-105_print-1

"Rep. Michael Bileca is making it harder for us to find good paying jobs," one of the fliers says. Later, it adds: "Bileca blocked efforts in Tallahassee to deliver thousands of jobs to the Miami area -- jobs for local contractors, small businesses, our tourism economy and area construction workers."

The flier attacking Trujillo has the same text. He and Bileca were perhaps the most vocal opponents in the Florida House of Representatives against the Dolphins' plan, which died when the chamber did not take it up for a floor vote before the end of the annual legislative session.

The flier against Diaz, however, is slightly different. Diaz, who has said he purposefully avoided vocally opposing the Dolphins, has said he is considering running for Congress.

"Our state Rep. Jose Felix Diaz only cares about one job in Miami-Dade. His own," the flier reads. "Diaz is eyeing a new, higher paying, taxpayer-funded job in Congress, despite outrageously blocking recent efforts in Tallahassee to bolster our local economy and bring 4,000 new private-sector jobs to Miami-Dade for us."

This post has been updated to refer to Florida Jobs First as a political group and not a political action committee, since it has not registered as such. (More on that here.)


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Jose Luzarraga

I love it!!!

Patricia Cameron

Shame on Ross. Spending money on a political attack which doesn't create jobs; rather than on renovations to his stadium, which would.

Victor Morales

Though he could be using his money for better purposes, I appreciate Ross standing up to our elected officials. But why isn't he calling out the actions of Rep. Jose Javier Rodriguez??? He was as vocal as some of these guys and helped get some Democrats to not support it. I mean, if the shoe fits..

A public education supporter

As a mom I will certainly be happy to anything I can to help get rid of Rep. Trujillo and Bileca, they are anti public education. Rep Trujillo's comments during the parent trigger were wrong and an insult to public school parents who care about their childrens education.



Proud 'Fins Fan

Sour grapes. Thank you Rep Trujillo, Bileca & Diaz for standing on principle. The county overwhelmingly was voting this down because it is NOT FAIR for Miami-Dade citizens to have to shell out money for renovations to his business, when the owner of the team doesn't want to put in on his own. I love the Dolphins, but this owner is getting very close to Jeffrey Loria territory with this move.

Proud 'Fins Fan

Maybe instead of spending money to try to shame a group of leaders that did right by their community, Mr. Ross could have put that into the renovations the stadium needs. GO FINS!


The last time I looked, we lived in a Democratic Republic! The people have a right to vote and the majority wins! If they had passed the bill, and the voters voted it down, end of story! But, NO, they wanted to play politics...with a billionaire! They wanted to hold the bill hostage, for what? Money? Did they really think they could do that with Ross? They get what they deserve. And, hopefully, the people will wake up and vote these guys out of office!


Lets not forget that Ross was willing to make a serious contribution toward renovations had this passed. He just doesn't want to pay for half-ass renovations when major changes are needed to bring in a Super Bowl. This should have gone to a vote! Thank obstructionist republicans for screwing things up once again.


Approve a 350m dollar renovation to the stadium at the expense of miami dade county tax payers when there's a 35 million dollar shortfall for the next fiscal year?? Huge fins fan, but glad that got shot down..we are in the midst of eliminating several fire rescue units and shutting down 20+ libraries. We see where ross has his priorities. I believe life safety and property protection is where the money needs to go. Lets keep fire rescue services steady and active, especially in this growing communtity.



Seriously: You're panhandling for a few bucks and a few days after all this goes down you announce you're doing to donate the bulk of your fortune to Bill Gates' billionaire charity. Seriously? Seriously?

So you HAVE THE MONEY, right?

And you DID SAY this was for the PUBLIC'S GOOD, right?

You're Mr. Miami Civic Pride, aintcha?

So why the panhandling and sudden PAC to crush politicians who, for a change, weren't thinking about getting re-elected?

Just sell the team and be gone. Please. Everything you do is a ham-handed disaster.

And, BTW...the logo stinks.

Supporter of our state reps

Miss Public Education Supporter, you have misrepresented both Bileca and Trujillo's stance on public education. In fact, Mr Bileca comes from an entire family of educators, Mom, Dad, and both sisters.
He is a man of high principles and integrity with a brilliant mind and he is extremely concerned for childrens welfare in the school system.


Will Weatherford and his fellow republicans in Tallahassee have mismanaged our state to the point of ruin I have lived in Florida for 60 years the last quarter Century of Republican rule has made us a laughing stock in our own nation they deserve what all underhanded backdoor political hacks deserve if the team didn't have the support why not let it come to a vote as promised? and if there will be no election why wasn't the money returned? Something has the stink of rotten fish and it isn't the Dolphins


It seems to me Ross should take care of his own investments. He should pay for everything he has the money,very greedy, sell the team.


Bileca and Trujillo have been an enemy to public education. Bilica's mom, dad, and wife are not the representative, he is!! He voted to allow Citizens Insurance to jack up our homeowners insurance and to allow FIU to raise tuition by 15%. Now he votes to kill jobs. He's a disgrace as a representative and needs to be replaced. Good thing his patent trigger bill did not pass and his illegal law was overturned by the Florida State Supreme Court.


If he's a billionaire, it seems like he should be able to pay for his business needs. Where can I go to get some free money for my business? Stand your ground!!!!


Trujillo and Bileca talk about business owners should not get free money which is not the case;however, they gave Citizens Insurance "free" money from us tax payers. Like if they really needed it. Shame on Trujillo and Bileca. Hippocrates


this is a joke all you guys talking and backing these nut jobs that listen to Anthony you like that crazy old man that sells cars had a team in philly lied and seud the city for money to fix his stadium and then sold the team Miami needs the money that it can get from all the games they play there if you like the heat look at all the money that Miami maid from that and tell me it aint worth it don't use the marlens as a cop out they should be sued for what they have dune to the city Miami should sue jeff for the right to run the team cuz all he did was lie and steel oh and one more thing Miami didn't put any money into dolphin stadium but you got all the money that it has maid you for super bowl that came hear and said will come more if we fix it up im a fan and don't want5 my team to go any place that's not hear so f!!k all you haters


why don't you all go back to cuba so that they can take your right to vote and tell you its for your own good that's what they did to us that's how I feel and ive never been to cuba its time to get rid of trujillo and bileca I don't like what they stand for I will HAV E MY FREEDUM !!!!!!!!!!


Bileca and Trujillo call themselves Representatives?
Then why do they only represent Special Interest Groups? What happened to representing the majority of the people in your district? Can Trujillo relate to the people in his district? He does not care how they feel or even ask their opinion. He just assumes they are not interested in new jobs, and assumes that they want their home owners insurance to increase. He even went as far as pushing a bill to help close the public schools in Sweetwater and force the struggling parents to pay for private schools or fight for charter school enrollment. His conduct and voting decisions are reprehensible. Trujillo is emulating Cuban style politics while his buddy Bileca teaches him about the old Eastern Europe style which is the people dont matter.

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