Lots of Florida news to squeeze in today; let’s get started…
Besides attending fundraisers, Mitt Romney is also pounding the pavement – listening and speaking with everyday citizens in America’s diners, coffee shops, small businesses, and homes. This was the case in Romney’s past three days in Florida.
Romney’s stop in Florida this week was his first official visit since declaring his 2012 presidential candidacy.
Romney was non-stop in the Sunshine State; he attended events – large and small – in Boca Raton, Miami, Tampa, Orlando, St. Petersburg, and Sarasota:
● Boca Raton
June 14, 2011 – Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney made his first Florida campaign stop in Boca Raton Tuesday night, visiting the home of Ned Siegel for a $1,000 per head fundraising dinner, reports The Palm Beach Post.
Siegel, a veteran of Florida Republican politics and current member of Romney’s Florida finance team, likens the candidate to former Florida governor Jeb Bush. “I think he’s the strongest presidential candidate when it comes to job creation and stimulating the economy,” said Siegel, praising Romney’s handle on national policy.
Siegel is a real estate developer and former ambassador to the Bahamas. Other hosts included: Siegel’s wife Stephanie, Rodger Krouse, Marc Leder, and Zach Zachariah.
June 15, 2011 – Romney held a small fundraiser at the Romero Britto art gallery on Lincoln Road, a day after he held a larger fundraiser in Boca Raton.
The former governor of Massachusetts was at the exclusive Woodfield Country Club in Boca, where about a hundred people showed up at $1,000 per head.
A breakfast fundraiser in Miami was also hosted for Governor Romney by Steve Ross, David and Carolina Cardenas, Mike Hernandez, and Stanley Tate.
Romney talked jobs and the economy during his stop at Buddy Brew Coffee in South Tampa. During the visit he held a brief round table discussion with eight people, several of which are currently looking for work.
He told the group his number one priority if elected President would be to make sure the United States is the top job creator in the world.
“President Obama has failed Florida; he’s failed Florida’s people with a 10.8% unemployment rate,” Romney later told reporters.
News report of Romney’s visit to Florida, including a roundtable discussion at Buddy Brew Coffee in Tampa:
● St. Petersburg
June 15, 2011 – Romney was in St. Petersburg Wednesday for a fundraiser hosted by former U.S. ambassador to Italy and Australia Mel Sembler, among others.
Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney took a break from a two-day Florida fundraising blitz to take in Wednesday’s Tampa Bay Rays game versus the Boston Red Sox at Tropicana Field. Dressed in a button-down shirt, Romney sat behind the Rays dugout but said he was rooting for Boston, like his sons, who are “Red Sox fans true blue.”
Mitt Romney in Sarasota for fundraiser
LIDO KEY – Lakewood Ranch developer Pat Neal arrived at Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney’s Sarasota fundraiser Thursday with a $10,000 check, but no firm long-term commitment to the candidate.
By the end of the lunch event, Neal said he had decided to throw his full support behind Romney and he was not alone: Most of the high-profile Republican movers and shakers in the region and across Florida appear to be lining up behind Romney as the early favorite to win the nomination.
The fundraiser at the Sarasota Yacht Club attracted a who’s who of local big-money Republican donors, political operatives and elected leaders.
“I still believe it’s a wide open race but Romney certainly has his flag up in Sarasota” and across Florida, Gruters said, adding that the 250 people at the fundraiser represented “the top level” of Republican fundraisers in Manatee and Sarasota counties.
“They were all here today,” Gruters said.
CONTINUE reading here.
Among the hosts were: Mel and Betty Sembler, Brent and Debbie Sembler, Jim Holton, a couple northeast Florida bigs – Ambassador John Rood, Sen. John and Jean Thrasher.
● Florida suffers from a 10.8 percent unemployment rate; home-foreclosures there are among the nation’s highest. It’s no wonder that impressive Florida endorsements for Romney have been forthcoming from Reps. Ander Crenshaw, Connie Mack and Tom Rooney, and state Sen. John Thrasher, former chairman of the Florida Republican Party.
► Jayde Wyatt
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