Dems: Rubio 'reeks of corruption'
"TALLAHASSEE - Despite budget cuts that will gut education, healthcare and law enforcement, Republican Speaker Marco Rubio "quietly slipped tough-to-spot language in a state budget plan last week that helps a friend and political money-man bid on a major fuel contract in a $265 million turnpike overhaul proposal."
"Does he have no shame? The only people 'better off' with Rubio's budget are Rubio and his political friends. It takes incredible contempt for the people of Florida to corruptly slide millions to a wealthy friend while millions of regular folks are hurting because of the recession he helped create," Florida Democratic Party spokesman Alejandro Miyar said. "...Rubio's pattern is disturbing and reeks of corruption."
Rubio told the Buzz that he put in the language over objections to the Department of Transportation's bid proposal. It was so narrowly drawn, he said, that only a few mega corporations could compete to build hotels, gas stations and food courts.
His elaborated in a statement sent earlier: “We strongly support requiring DOT to make competitive its bidding processes for businesses on the Turnpike and elsewhere. DOT makes the bidding decisions—not the Legislature. The Legislature’s job is to ensure that the citizens are well served by this process. Monopolies don’t serve consumers well. The rising cost of gas already burdens motorists; it’s vital that we stimulate an open marketplace with the most competitive prices possible. By limiting the bids to a small number of big companies, as DOT wants to do, they would actually reduce competition and that could lead to further price increases.”