Americans for Prosperity Builds Political Machine
Andres Malave walks the street of a west Miami neighborhood. He started the day huddled with about a dozen volunteers in a Cuban restaurant here, offering them a last-minute pep talk before they went out to meet with voters....These volunteer ground troops make up the backbone of Americans for Prosperity, the flagship organization of the political network overseen by industrialist billionaires Charles G. and David H. Koch.
... Malave, the group’s Hispanic outreach chief in Florida, spent more than three hours knocking on doors in the scorching sun on a recent Tuesday. He kept asking the questions and punching in the answers on his iPad so leaders at headquarters could figure out which messages were working.
Koch billionaires. These are the rat bastards behind Arizona's "papers please" law and the media demonization of small children fleeing violence in Central America in an effort to stop immigration reform. They're building a massive database to target specific groups of people with specific messages. What is disgusting is that they will have people going to poor, white neighborhoods to find people who will be targeted with the ultra-racist "scary brown people are coming for your jobs" narrative. Simultaneously, they have these "Hispanic Outreach" programs that target Hispanic neighborhoods telling them that "Obamacare is coming for your jobs".
For the FL gubernatorial election, Hispanics are being told that Rick Scott is a friend to brown people everywhere... he just can't show it. That's the message being given:
"He's not flashy, he's quiet about it," said an aide to a Hispanic House member, "but when you're around Rick Scott enough you know he's pro-Hispanic all the way. He listens to us and he gets a lot of his ideas from us."
Translated: I secretly like you but I just can't let anyone know that I do. Maybe that's why I screw you over all the time, but we're cool, right??
The FL GOP continually spits on our Latino community and then thinks they will forget a few weeks before the election when they pander. No amount of money is going to change the feeling about rightwing conservatives. You need to look no further than Rick Scott. Last year I wrote a very short list about his issues with Hispanics. I have added to it, along with evidence of what the FL GOP is really all about. This is our last chance to get the message out before Election Day.
1. Rick Scott has a history of discrimination
Rick Scott's Solantic, the medical chain he founded from his Medicaid fraud scandal, was not a friendly place for people who weren't "mainstream" (Rick Scott's words). The Regional Medical Director complained he was not allowed to hire well-qualified applicants who had the slightest Hispanic accent. His claim is verified by multiple employees.
And if you need a clearer picture....
2. Rick Scott insults Hispanic fundraiser, then defended bigots on his staff!.
Like Solantic, Scott has "mainstream" people make up his core staff--and there is a well-known intolerant culture. One exception to his core staff makeup was Miguel ("Mike") Hernandez, Scott's finance co-chair. Mike was his largest single donor and his best fundraiser. Naturally, he was treated to a racist incident involving two high-level white, male staffers who thought it hilarious to mimick a Mexican accent on the way to Chipotle. (His staff is as socially inept as Rick Scott.) Mike fired off an angry email about the incident and was brushed off. He then abruptly quit.
Rick Scott's campaign wasted no time in
Rick Scott then DEFENDED the two immature bigoted young men, simultaneously insulting his Hispanic "friend" and allowing his culture of intolerance within his campaign to continue unabated. You would think his largest single donor AND most successful fundraiser would carry some weight---but he was brown and his staffers were white, sooooo.....
3. The RNC's Florida Hispanic Director and GOP FL lawmker switch to Democrat over the FL GOP's "culture of intolerance" and hate
RNC State Director Of Florida Outreach, Pablo Pantoja, switched to the Democratic Party last year saying:
It doesn’t take much to see the culture of intolerance surrounding the Republican Party today. I have wondered before about the seemingly harsh undertones about immigrants and others. Look no further; a well-known organization recently confirms the intolerance of that which seems different or strange to them
He was joined this year by a prominent Republican activist and former GOP legislator, Ana Rivas Logan, who also had enough and switched.
4. GOP leaders call Puerto Rico a "basketcase" and its people "foreigners"
This year, the GOP chair for Orange County, one of Florida's largest counties which includes Orlando, described Puerto Rico as a "semi-socialist government where the highest aspiration is a nice secure government job." The fact that we have a large Puerto Rican population didn't phase him, because he went on to say the whole island was "a terrible basket case." None of that is true. Puerto Rico is not remotely socialist, and their government jobs are comparable to the US as a whole. But whatever.
Now-former GOP Congresswoman Ginny Brown-Waite didn't call them leaches, but did say they were "foreigners". Not only did she insult them, she had the unmitigated gall to have her staff insist to journalists that she stood by her statement even after repeatedly being told that statement was factually incorrect. Facts mean little to republicans. The fact that they can be so insulting to one out of five Floridians shows how little regard they have for their fellow American citizens who might look a little darker.
5. Despite near unanimous support in legislature, Rick Scott vetoed driver's license bill just to be a racist dick!
Even in our wacky, teabag conservative legislature, the state senate passed a bill that would have allowed children of undocumented aliens to obtain temporary Florida driver's licenses 36-0. The even teabaggier House passed it 115-2. It was a slam dunk. Yet Scott vetoed it.
He didn't gave a reason. It passed with such a margin that it would be overridden, but Scott vetoed it anyway just as an FU to brown people.
Years later, in the Telemundo debate with Charlie Crist, he was directly asked why. He said some nonsense that it wouldn't have made a difference because applicants who get work permits can get driver's licenses at the same time. This is not always the case. Sometimes the paperwork is weeks or months delayed, and the law would have allowed Dreamers to get their temporary driver's license until the permit came in. Again, Scott was just being an ass.
Said State Sen. Soto: “Simply unconscionable, it’s a[n] .... anti-Hispanic move."
6. Rick Scott tried to purge THOUSANDS of Hispanic voters
Such is the case in Florida. Of the 180,000 potential noncitizens identified for purging in 2012, less than 0.02% were actually ineligible. Nearly 60 percent of those included in the initial list were Hispanic – meanwhile, Hispanic voters make up only 13 percent of Florida’s electorate.
Only about 60 were legitimate out of Scott's initial 182,000 purges. Keep in mind millions of Floridians voted.
And Sick Rott had promised to try again in 2014. He was even going to do the same bastard move of purging 55 days before the election like in 2012, but luckily, an appeals court shut him down.
7. Study showed that Florida Hispanics wait in the longest lines to vote
Scott signed a sweeping voter suppression act during his first full year as governor. Many polling places throughout South Florida were eliminated, along with early-voting days. A study by the Advancement Project found that out of all the ethnic groups, it was Hispanic voters who waited the longest. In Miami-Dade, the average time was 73 minutes. There were reports of people waiting up to EIGHT freaking hours to vote.
Other highlights from the study showed that Hispanic voters were more likely to have to use a provisional ballot and almost twice as likely to have those ballots rejected.
8. Rick Scott supported AZ-style anti-brown bill... That EXEMPTED white people!!
GOP chairman of the House Judiciary committee, William Snyder, proposed a law that would allow police to harass people "suspected" of being here illegally yet specifically exempted Canadians and Western Europeans to ensure only the appropriate "brown-people" minority would be targeted. (This was the closest to saying "leave Whitey alone" and get away with it). He even admitted it wasn't about "rule of law" or "jobs" but was worried about what was happening to our country.
This law was too bigoted for even for the Florida legislature, but Rick Scott not only supported it, he embraced it and promised to sign it if it made it to his desk!
9. Rick Scott even insults when pandering
Rick Scott insulted a Latina reporter by trying to strong arm her into only discussing his love of brown people and NO OTHER QUESTIONS. She took to the airwaves to say how wrong that was. And then there was that insulting ad that was pulled for trying a little too hard. (Ironically, the one featuring a Miami business owner who turned out to be a convicted human smuggler was not pulled.)
10. Rick Scott worked with PamBo to spend tax money on fighting Latino resident citizens from getting in-state tuition!
Scott says “I completely oppose” the Texas program, which Gov. Perry defends, of granting in-state tuition rates to illegal alien college students.
That was from a newsmax article in 2011. He says he never said that now that he is desperately trying to pander to Latinos.
Our tax dollars went to defend what the judge correctly described as a "blatantly unconstitutional" policy to deny American citizens the right to in-state tuition unless their parents could prove legal residency. The US District Court judge even lectured the state for trying to take their rights away. But that didn't stop Rick Scott or Pam Bondi. It wasn't their money.
Scott reversed himself this year and is now saying he was for it all the time. Because we are all idiots.
Well, maybe we are. We did vote him in and the race is a lot closer than it should be. Scott is right--we do have short memories. Nothing I'm saying here should be news to anyone, but it always is.
Take action. Actúe Ahora.
These are just a few examples of how Hispanics specifically have been hurt the past four years. Rick Scott has hurt everyone of us who is well-connected or extremely wealthy by taking money from the disabled, our Veterans, our environment, the uninsured, and our working families to pay for schemes that allow he and his cronies to get very, very wealthy. All Floridians, whatever our heritage, deserve a hell of a lot better than this. Please vote today....