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MOSI makes clear that, Biden notwithstanding, it's politically neutral

Purple, not red or blue, is the color of the Museum of Science and Industry, its operators say.

[Times file]

Purple, not red or blue, is the color of the Museum of Science and Industry, its operators say.



The Museum of Science and Industry, whose building and land are controlled by a largely Republican Hillsborough County Commission, wants the public to know that hosting a campaign appearance Wednesday by Democratic Vice President Joe Biden is strictly business.

“MOSI is not red or blue – MOSI’s signature color is purple, a mix of red and blue – and our venue is available for voices on all sides of an issue,” MOSI President and CEO Molly Demeulenaere said in a news reelase.

A secondary message of the release is that the financially strapped museum remains open for business, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., even as Biden stumps for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. The vice president is scheduled to take the stage at 11:15 a.m.

“However, like event attendees, MOSI guests will need to pass through a security screening,” MOSI notes.

The two groups will use different entrances and Biden fans have to RSVP.

But more on that political neutrality.

“While this event is for a Democratic candidate,” the MOSI release adds, “the local Republican Party has rented space at MOSI for monthly meetings since 2013. MOSI would offer the same event space and charge the same rate for any other presidential candidate’s events.”

The same deal is true with others among the many local venues being tapped for events during this divisive presidential campaign season. The others just don’t send news releases about it.

In financial statements to Hillsborough County earlier this year, MOSI reported that it had lost $277,000 halfway through its fiscal year. The museum board has voted to pursue a move from its north Tampa location across from the University of South Florida to a site downtown as part of Channelside area redevelopment.

[Last modified: Tuesday, November 1, 2016 4:51pm]


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