Frist Goes After Miami Money for 2008 Presidential Run

You know how you’ve looked forward to 2008, because it meant time was up for George W. Bush, he would not even be running, and no better how bad it is until then, it is sure to be better after the election?

Well, maybe not.

…the people he met with interpreted it as an “exploratory” meeting with local power brokers in case he decides to run for president…

The Miami Herald is reporting that Bill Frist is testing the presidential campaign waters with the obligatory first trip to South Florida, home of Obscenely Rich and Rotten Republicans Who Like to Give.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist met with some of Miami’s most powerful and controversial figures Tuesday for lunch in a private room at Cafe Abracci, a move interpreted by some as testing the waters for a possible presidential run.

South Florida, with an unusual electorate that includes Cuban American Republicans, has played a critical role in deciding the last two presidential elections, and is one of the nation’s leading areas in the amount of money raised for national political campaigns.

While Frist did not comment on the visit, the people he met with interpreted it as an “exploratory” meeting with local power brokers in case he decides to run for president…

Readers of Dave Barry would recognize the meeting organizers as the masterminds who have profited from over $5.4 billion (with a “b”) in federal and state contracts to expand Miami International Airport. The expansion is a project without end, with the delays and cost overruns the subject of numerous investigations that somehow never result in indictments. Here’s how Dave describes it:

Perhaps you think I’m being harsh on MIA. Well, perhaps this is because you do not have to use it a lot. I do. Almost every week, I get on a plane there, and, if all goes according to plan, the plane lands in some other city. I am almost always struck by the fact that the other city’s airport, big or small, is a WHOLE lot less hostile to travelers than MIA, the airport that proudly proclaims to visitors from all over the world: “Welcome! You Are In A Hellhole!” I have ranted before about the bad design, the confusion and the insanely overcrowded, last-chopper-out-of-Saigon ambience at MIA, so I’m not going to dwell on it here…

Too often, Miami-Dade gives the strong impression that its allegedly public facilities and institutions — its airports, its seaports, its municipal governments — are run mainly for the benefit of the insiders and the plugged-in, and the hell with the public. I’m not naive enough to think this doesn’t happen elsewhere…There’s probably a big sign somewhere in Las Vegas that says “Proudly Owned and Operated by Organized Crime Since 1946.” But at least they manage to provide luggage carts, for God’s sake.

So that’s who Bill “Blind Trust My Ass” Frist came to see – folks just like him. And he’s not talking about it.

Frist aides misdirected a reporter waiting for Frist outside the restaurant to a back door, allowing the Senate leader to leave via the front to avoid questions.

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