Sunday, March 06, 2016

Patrick Murphy's Money Problems


Al Franken hasn't been a bad Senator... unless you were expecting a real fire-breathing progressive champion like Elizabeth Warren or Jeff Merkley. He votes well enough... and that's more than you can say for 10 Senate Democrats who have F-rated voting records or even for the half dozen who are C-rated. And you can't really blame Franken for the political calculus that saw him jump on the Hillary Clinton bandwagon. Even far better Democrats than he stepped into that open pit sewer. But... he did suck up to Chuck Schumer and endorse one of the most right-wing Democrats in the House, life-long Republican Patrick Murphy against lief-long stellar progressive Alan Grayson for the Florida Senate seat. Of course, the thousands of dollars he got from Murphy's parents may have made that even easier for Franken.

This week, Murphy has been stumbling all over a ridiculous stunt which he's using to trick actual working families think he;s sympathetic to their plight, "The Patrick Murphy Minimum Wage Challenge," which has been laughed about far and wide.
These publicity-stunt "minimum wage challenges" the Democrats love to stage never work. Remember the legislators in Florida who tried last September to live on $8.05 a day but threw in the towel on the second or third day?

All they did is make real poor people mad.

Now it's happened again. Democratic Rep. Patrick Murphy, a candidate for Marco Rubio's Senate seat, decided to "go liberal"-- build a little empathy, see what it feels like to live poor. At least, that's what he told the media when he joined the latest "minimum wage challenge."

“Far too many people in this country are working full-time jobs yet still living in poverty,” Murphy said in a video he promoted on his Twitter account Wednesday.

Well, the poor guy got unlucky. There he was enjoying the media attention, tweeting scenes from living on Florida's $8.05-an-hour minimum wage, attracting admiring paparazzi even-- when ... boom! ... he decided to stray from the path of poverty and messed up.

On Day 2 he slipped away to a port-and-caviar-style fundraiser thrown by wealthy supporters, and little did he know (but probably should have suspected it could happen), a Republican opposition group found him and filmed him livin' lush and large.

Murphy would have been wiser to fess up rather than exposing his silver spoon to voters.

Here's what he did: On Thursday afternoon, he tweeted a photograph of himself using cash to pay for a ticket on Washington’s subway system. He wrote, "Day 2 of my Minimum Wage Challenge-- take public transit. Rode the DC metro to work this morning.” And on Friday, Murphy tweeted, “Minimum Wage Challenge, Day 3-- groceries with my $17 daily budget was a challenge. #FLfor15 #FightFor15”.

What actually happened was, a few hours after sharing the subway station photograph on his congressional social media account, Murphy boarded a plane for Florida and attended the fundraiser at the Tampa home of former City Councilwoman Linda Saul-Sena, and her husband Mark.

To make matters worse, Murphy left the fundraiser in a car with a driver, causing the man who had photographed him, Ian Prior, the communications director for Republican groups American Crossroads and the new Senate Leadership Fund, to quip, "Minimum wage goes a lot further than I thought!"
But the big money in this race isn't about Murphy's chauffeur-driven limousines and visits to yacht clubs but about the flood of financing coming into the race from special interests. There is no non-incumbent running for the Senate this cycle anywhere-- not a Republican nor a Democrat-- who is being more financed by the banksters. The banksters want a proven sycophant in the Senate and the last thing they want is another Elizabeth Warren/Bernie Sanders (i.e., Alan Grayson). The Finance Sector has seen Murphy kissing its ass for the last 3 years in the House Financial Services Committee, where he is known as "Wall Street's errand boy" and they have shoveled $872,350 into Murphy's coffers so far. The non-incumbent Republican Wall Street has given the most to is Todd Young (R-IN), who got $402,015 from the banksters. Another big source of money for Murphy has, once again, been daddy's bank account. His parents, who have been bribing dozens of Democrats into endorsing their son, dumped another $200,000 into their own personal SuperPAC.
A super PAC that launched last spring to support Democratic U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy's U.S. Senate bid raised $535,000 from donors since July-- including $200,000 from Murphy's father.

The fundraising haul for "Floridians for a Strong Middle Class" was revealed today in the super PAC's end-of-year disclosure report to the Federal Elections Commission, which was due Sunday. The super PAC reports its finances every six months.

Through June, the committee had just $25,000 in donations, so its collections in the latter six months of the year reveal a stark increase in activity. Super PACs are not bound by the $2,700 cap on individual contributions-- as candidate's campaign committees are -- nor can they coordinate directly with the candidate.

The super PAC's warchest is separate from the $4.3 million Murphy has in the bank for his personal campaign committee.

Murphy's father, construction executive Thomas Murphy, gave $200,000 to "Floridians for a Strong Middle Class" just before year's end, the report showed. Thomas Murphy has a history of donating to political candidates in both parties, including his son.

Other large donations detailed in the disclosure report include $100,000 from a "Michael Smith" of Boulder, Co. (his employer information wasn't listed), $50,000 from the Poarch Band of Creek Indians in Alabama and $50,000 from "230 East 63rd-6 Trust LLC."

According to Florida business registration filings, that company is an "inactive" business venture associated with Nicholas Mastroianni II. Mastroianni developed the $150 million Harbourside project in Patrick Murphy's home city of Jupiter in Palm Beach County. Mastroianni's son, Anthony, also gave $5,000 to the super PAC, the filing showed.
While Murphy was stumbling around incoherently with his fake minimum wage challenge at the St. Petersburg Yacht Club, Grayson was in Congress introducing H.R. 4494, the Renters Fairness and Equality Act, which will, according to Grayson, "allow renters to deduct the amount they pay for the main roof over their head, and help level the tax playing field between renters and homeowners... If the bill becomes law, a renter paying $1,500 a month, for example, could save about $4,500 annually with a rental deduction if she is in a 25 percent tax bracket... There’s an unequal treatment now of owners and renters," Grayson told "Renters should be able to share in the tax savings. This is a tax benefit that would go primarily to people who need it." According to, more than a third of all American households are renters, and of those, half of them are having a tough time making those monthly payments. If you're not a bankster or a member of the Murphy family, you might want to help Grayson win the Florida Senate seat that Marco Rubio has abandoned and that Wall Street and their fully-owned subsidiary, Chuck Schumer, are desperately trying to deliver to Murphy. If Grayson wins this one, it would be historic. Just tap the thermometer:
Goal Thermometer

A little bonus: who won the debate in Flint tonight between Bernie Sanders and the establishment candidate who has been endorsed by virtually every member of the Democratic Party establishment and all it's subsidiaries and media allies? TIME Magazine asked it's readers to weigh in. They did:

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