And the Republican money-man's decision to blast GOP lawmakers from Miami has rallied local tea party activists who called him a "pig" in an email.
In an unexpected twist, the tea party group is calling Ross-funded mailers in a Pasco County seat "slanderous" even though they help the conservative Republican candidate. The group says Ross just wants to "buy" the Legislature so taxpayers can then finance what he should pay for out of his own pocket.
Said Ross' spokesman Eric Jotkoff: "We are not going to respond to name calling, especially when aimed at a man who has investment heavily in South Florida to create jobs and opportunities for countless families. That is just sad and unfortunate. Rather we will continue to focus on our mission."
Here's the press release's text:
Soon after Florida state lawmakers said NO to billionaire Steve Ross’s request for almost $200 million in taxpayer funding for a new Miami Dolphins football stadium, the New York city real estate mogul threatened to "take-down" certain state senators and legislators who he believes prevented him from getting his hands on the money.
Steve Ross formed and funded the “Florida Jobs First” SuperPAC with the intended purpose of defeating the re-election of the most vocal opponents of a Bill he sponsored, and then lobbied state representatives to pass - to have Florida residents and vacationers pay for upgrades for his Sun-Life stadium.
Ross failed in his quest to gain taxpayer funding for his football stadium mainly due to the outcries and objections by Bill Weatherford, Carlos Trujillio, Michael Bileca, Jose Felix Diaz and a few other state lawmakers who oposed the “billionaire welfare.” The Steve Ross funded political action committee then began a public relations campaign to slander and discredit those representatives that he felt were responsible for his defeat.
The first attack-mail campaign by the Florida Jobs First SuperPAC began in June and was intended to "take-down" Weatherford, Trujillio, Bileca and Diaz, but a new round of slanderous TV ads and propaganda mailings are now being distributed to residents in Pasco County, in anticipation of the October 15th primary elections, and in order to convince voters to vote for the candidate that supports Steve Ross, and his ever evolving campaign for taxpayer subsidies for his football franchise.
Miami-Dade hotel concierge Michael Delmont stated, “Why should Miami residents subsidize a billionaire? If he wants to build a brand new stadium for his sports team then he should pay for it himself.”
Miami Tea Party activist Susan Sanchez stated what most Miami residents must feel, “why is a rich guy from New York using a Miami politial action committee to buy an election in Orlando? He thinks he can buy enough Legislatures to get his hands on our tax dollars. He's perverting democracy through his political action committee. It’s anti-American, bad for business and it’s just plain bad for Florida residents and visitors.”
TEA Party Miami