Thursday, April 21, 2016

If Character Matters New Dem Darren Soto Will Never Be A Florida Congressman


Recently, Wall Street's congressional branch, the New Democratic Coalition, a grouping of corrupt right-of-center Democrats called the New Dems, released a list of candidates they have vetted and found Republican-lite enough and prone enough towards the corruption the group thrives on to endorse. No one was in the slightest bit surprised to find Florida state Senator Darren Soto's name on the list. We've been warning Democrats in the Orlando area since back in December that Soto is bad news-- unless you're the NRA, in which case Darren Soto is your kind of candidate.

Oddly, Soto also applied for an endorsement from the Congressional Progressive Caucus, whose members were so appalled by his failure to understand progressive issues that they immediately turned around and endorsed Susannah Randolph, a long-time Orlando area activist and Alan Grayson's former district director. There are 4 other Democrats contending for the seat-- including Grayson's fiancée, Dena Minning, and there is a lot of fear that progressives will cannibalize the vote and allow Soto, the definition of a DINO, to slip into a seat occupied by Congress' most dynamic, brilliant and effective progressive. Yesterday, Ashley Feinberg, writing at Gawker chipped away at Soto's already tenuous credibility.
Before he was a star on the rise in the world of Florida politics, State Senator Darren Soto was apparently a member George Washington University Law School’s Law Revue, a “musical and sketch comedy show,” which sounds almost as terrible as the Florida House of Representatives. In 2006, three short years after he authored a Law Revue song in which he lamented, “Back when we were both 1-L’s you were in my section/I spent every day in Con Law hiding my erection,” he was elected to the Florida House of Representatives. The good people of Florida reelected him for several more terms before moving on to the State Senate in 2012 (and for which he was reelected in 2014).

Unless you live in Florida, none of this is your problem, strictly speaking, except that now, Soto is running to replace U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, a longtime congressman who’s currently gunning for Marco Rubio’s Senate seat. But where Grayson maintained a staunchly progressive voting record, Soto leans about as far right as a Democrat can without tumbling into the other side of the aisle. Or as The Sunshine State News, Florida insiders’ conservative outlet of choice, described him, “Soto is about as good as conservatives can hope for from his liberal Democratic district.”

Soto boasts an A-rating from the NRA, has voted in favor of pro-life terminology, is a big supporter of Jeb Bush’s terrible school voucher program, and is beloved by big business interest groups everywhere. All of which helps explain the young politician’s friendly relationship with soon-to-be ex-Senator Marco Rubio. So friendly, in fact, that Rubio even played a bizarre joke on the then-Florida congressman in 2008, in which he hired an actress to send a note to Soto on the House floor and claim to be a secret admirer. When Soto got up to approach his new love interest, according to the Orlando Weekly, Rubio “crashed his gavel down on the podium and announced to all in earshot that a member of the House was seriously out of order. The sergeant-at-arms was sent to retrieve Soto, handcuffing him in the process.”

Soto protested, saying the woman was simply a concerned voter, at which point Rubio revealed that per the Orlando Weekly, “Soto was the victim of both a prank and his notorious libido. Rubio announced the prank, calling poor Soto to the ‘well’” at the main podium to the laughs and applause of his peers.”

That “notorious libido” has been with him since his time as a law student, when he was on the Law Revue. Accompanying the Revue’s performances, at least in Soto’s day, was a short-lived Law Revue Review newsletter, which you can still access on the school’s website. The newsletter is an objectively terrible attempt a law school-oriented Onion ripoff (the site even inexplicably lists The Onion in its sidebar of links), but it’s nothing special; the field of cringeworthy university satire sites is a crowded one. What’s more interesting is the parody lyrics attributed to Darren Soto.

Here’s a song attributed to Soto entitled “2-Luv.”
By Darren Soto

Back when we both were 1-L's you were in my section
I spent everyday in Con Law, hiding my erection
At first you seemed like you were distant
I didn't know what I would do
But I won you that night I held your head While you were puking at the bar review

We have gone too far
No we haven't, we could get much worse
We have gone too far
No we haven't...

Thank you for not filing a grievance for sexual duress
And thanks for granting my motion to get undressed
But then you left me for a 3-L and you called me immature
You were once a crazy 1-L chick, but now you're a 2-L bore

Fine, fine, fine, fine...
I want to insert my dicta and give you my full case load
I want to show you the wonders of the penal code
And I still love your oral arguments, they get me weak in the knees
As long as we reach conclusion, I'll give you attorney's fees

We've gone too far to go back
We've gone too far into hell
It's too late, we're 2-L's and it's too much
We've gone too far to go back
And we're running out of luck
We're 2-L's and we're too fucked
Soto’s attempts at inserting legal jargon puns are bad (writing the line “I want to show you the wonder of my penal code” should be a criminal offense). The jokes about having sex with a heavily intoxicated woman and thanking her for not “filing a grievance for sexual duress” are much worse.

What’s more, in the Law Revue Review staff bios, Soto’s appears to be only one that A) is not written in complete sentences and B) relates almost everything back to sex:
Darren Michael Soto - Undergraduate: Rutgers School of Goombas and Wiseguys - Place of Origin: Doity Joise - Prior Occupation: Asexual Polygamist - Current Occupation: Wielder of the Shaft - Course of Study: Sex Law - Goal: To become a back-up dancer for Christina Aguilera or die trying - Hobbies: Jealousy, Boredom and Self-Gratification - Favorite Quote: “This junk in my trunk ain’t made for chumps” - Favorite Book: “The BFG” - Favorite Color: Green
...[It] may be excusable for a bunch of idiot kids. But Soto was 26 when he graduated from GW. And judging from his antics in the Florida House, not much has changed. This wasn’t that long ago, after all.

Soto’s office did not return Gawker’s requests for comment.

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