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UF's student newspaper rips Bondi for comments made on campus

@mikevansickler

If there’s one basic rule in political communication, it’s know your audience.

So if, say, you’re speaking at a college or university during this time of rising student loan debt and limited job prospects, don’t brag to the students about all the lucky breaks you had or the personal connections that helped get you internships.

Alas, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi apparently broke this rule, and the Independent Florida Alligator, the student newspaper that covers the University of Florida, was there to report it.

In a review the paper ran Monday and can be found here, Matt Schneider, a UF engineering senior, seized on a number of comments made by Bondi, a UF grad, during a talk at the Bob Graham Center for Public Service on Thursday.

Consider Schneider’s opening Bondi quote:

“When I was in college, I didn’t know what I wanted to do...I wasn’t even sure I wanted to practice law...When I was in law school, I did a certified legal internship at the state attorney’s office, and my dad conspired with Bill James, who was the state attorney at the time because my dad was so worried I didn’t want to practice law. And so I did this internship at the state attorney’s office…”

Schneider doesn’t let that one go.

“In what was apparently meant to be an effort to connect with those of us students who aren’t sure what direction we want to go post-graduation, she instead told a story of the well-connected being afforded valuable opportunities in spite of a lack of drive to earn them,” Schneider writes.

Ouch.

There’s more, so if you haven’t already seen it, view it here.

And yes, listen early on for when Bondi boasts: “I don’t think I’ve ever made a resume in my life."

Just exactly the kind of thing students want to hear.

 

Comments

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Bill Davidson

Have a conversation with her and it becomes clear she still has no clue.

Dave Johnston

I am a Republican and read his story. Cannot disagree with a word he wrote.

Ed Jenkins

The readers have no interest in what a juvenile magazine written by those who are in rebellious stages towards authority figures has to say. While she faced little competition, this Bondi was the first statewide republican candidate that this democrat primary voter has voted for and her execution of her job and that she is now the state's most popular politician has vindicated that vote.

It is quite a bonus that this Bondi has a well connected father and the voters are thankful to have a woman of such great pedigree.

Highly paid Republican operative

Ed Jenkins we have a deal that we pay you $1 per post but if you do not stop making us look bad then we will cut you down to 50 cents a post.

Unpaid Republican operative

I am also a Republican (and a UF alum) and have a number of problems with what he wrote.

First - Pam Bondi is elected separately from Rick Scott, so to suggest she is part of the Rick Scott administration is factually inaccurate. The author states that Bondi's comments exemplify how the Rick Scott administration is disconnected from the average young Floridian. Interesting. Scott was adopted. His father was a truck driver and mother found work where she could. His family relied on public housing. Hardly the profile of the privileged out of touch person the author suggests.

I am a young Floridian who was not born into a wealthy connected family and don't seem to feel the same way. In fact, I don't recall electing the author to speak for me, but he certainly takes such privileges.

Second- the author focuses on comments Bondi made that were a small portion of her overall presentation. Context matters. She discussed not having a resume in the context of her having been a prosecutor her whole career - not because she never needed a resume because of some family privilege. Also, while she states that her father "conspired" with the State Attorney, that does not necessarily mean she got the internship because of her father's connections. I am not naive to the fact that it probably helped, but the author fails to acknowledge that MANY students get these internships. Law schools have established programs to get students into these programs. The author suggests she only got it because of her father's connections - which is a conclusion that cannot be made simply by the comments in the video.

Third - I don't agree with the sweeping statements about Republican officials and the cutting of programs to help underprivileged Florida students. Rick Scott has proposed record-high spending levels on education. Opposes increases in tuition and fees. Expands pre-K education. Raised teacher salaries. Supports added performance funding for colleges, so they focus on teaching skills that lead to careers. Supported expanding medicaid despite the political risks in doing so. His signature focus as governor has been on bringing jobs to Florida and making Florida a friendly environment for employers - the most important benefit to the average young Floridian.

Fourth - the story about the voting location at the Reitz Union is an overblown and fabricated controversy. The Reitz Union will continue to be a regular voting precinct on election day. I was a UF student for undergrad and grad school and I still managed to vote in every election. UF students are smart - they can figure out how to vote on election day, vote by absentee, or go one mile to the other early voting location. Spare me the fake outrage.

To the author I say congrats on your upcoming graduation; be grateful you are graduating in this economic upswing. When I graduated, the economy was tanking, jobs were disappearing, and Charlie Crist chose to leave his job when most people were trying to hang on to theirs.

I could go on and on. But this governor doesn't get the credit he deserves. I like the fact we have a governor who wakes up in the morning with the focus of bringing opportunity to Florida. Can anyone say with certainty what Crist's focus is on a given day besides winning an election? By the way - Crist is the son of a once powerful local politician.

Go Gators!

Fairy Larry

And the state issues out unlimited kill tags for young black men

I was born raised and still live in redneck Texas and its funny that I can say that no longer are Mississippi and Alabama the only states more pathetically white trash than the Lone Star State...well of course there is Louisiana but in Florida you can kill at will

Useless Conservative White Trash Filth

John

Unpaid republican operative is on the payroll. Also, You're a twit. But mostly, please don't represent yourself as unpaid when you're getting a check to make Prick Scott look good. He's shitty, and you know he's shitty, regardless of who signs your paychecks.

Bill Wohlsifer

I am the Libertarian candidate for Florida Attorney General 2014. I would welcome an opportunity to speak to the students at UF. Please feel free to contact media@Wohlsifer4AG.com to make arrangements. Thank you.
Bill Wohlsifer

Hmmmm

Unpaid Republican operative - thank you for saying what I was going to type (more eloquently at that)!


As for John - guess you have to lower yourself to that level when someone gets put in their place as badly as Unpaid Republican operative put Mr. Schneider. Your post will surely sway a lot of people!

Real Talk

The comments section of any article is the armpit of the internet. The viewpoints expressed therein could hardly sway a paper bag.

Can't take anymore

Wasn't Pam supposed to get married a while back? Is she still flying from Tallahassee at taxpayer expense to shack up with her elderly boyfriend in Tampa every weekend? She has always had sugar daddy's to take care of her and now it happens to be the evil Rick Scott and his incredibly rich friends funding the RPOF.

Paul Harvey

Scott was adopted. His father was a truck driver and mother found work where she could. His family relied on public housing. Hardly the profile of the privileged out of touch person the author suggests.

Scott went on to law school, was in the Navy, then worked for a law firm. Then started a hospital company that went on to merge with another hospital company to become Columbia/HCA, the largest for profit health care company in the US. Scott resigned as Chief Executive of Columbia/HCA in 1997 amid a controversy over the company's business and Medicare billing practices; the company ultimately admitted to fourteen felonies and agreed to pay the federal government over $600 million, which was the largest fraud settlement in US history. Scott went on to spend $75 million of his own money to buy the Florida governor's office, where he tried to implement his ultra right wing, tea party policies, cutting education funding. Then in a desperate attempt to resurrect his low polling numbers and win a second term, he flip-flopped on many issues to make himself look more moderate.

And now you know the rest of the story. Good Day.

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