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New Group Targets Quiggle With Negative Ads

Another shadowy 527 group is weighing into Florida’s District 8 Senate race – this time targeting Ponte Vedra Beach businessman Dan Quiggle, who is showing up as the frontrunner in some polls.

The TV ads and mail pieces are to begin Wednesday, attacking Quiggle as being weak on seniors’ issues. The spots are paid for by Citizens for Better Care, whose financing is believed to stem largely from nursing home operators.

Indirectly, the ads may help former House Speaker John Thrasher, once a lobbyist for the Florida Medical Association, and whose status as the district’s likely successor to late Sen. Jim King, R-Jacksonville, has been shaken.

“It’s no surprise that John Thrasher and the special interests are attacking us,” said Adam Gillette, a Quiggle spokesman. “They’ve seen the polls and they know that we’re ahead.”

A McLaughlin & Associates poll late last month for the Quiggle campaign showed the candidate with an eight percent lead over second-place Thrasher, with former Rep. Stan Jordan and Jacksonville City Councilman Art Graham trailing. The Republican primary is Sept. 15.

The race has been marked by hard-hitting TV spots – mostly aimed at Thrasher. Stop Tax Waste, Inc., whose financing in part comes from trial lawyers, and Conservative Citizens for Justice, led by Jacksonville lawyer Tom Edwards, a past president of the state’s trial lawyer association, have aired ads targeting Thrasher for his free spending of taxpayer money on House renovations and a pair of ethics violations before and after he took office.

Another TV spot financed by allies of the Florida Justice Association, the attorneys’ group, also points out that Thrasher as a lobbyist worked for trial lawyers on a pair of claims bills in recent years.

4 Responses »

  1. Sounds to me like John Thrasher is no friend of seniors either. He's propped up by the insurance industry that has a real history of limiting necessary care to us. If Mr. Thrasher is straight up why doesn't he address the issues himself. I have watched these ads again and again and everyone but him speaks. I want to hear what he has to say. Maybe its nothing and right now I have to assume that.

  2. In the race to fill Jim King’s Senate seat, many influential people and high-powered groups are spending feverishly telling us how to vote. One very important detail, at least for residents of the Greater Arlington and Kernan areas, has not been discussed in the political ads.

    In 2007, residents in these areas were fighting valiantly against an amazing team of lobbyists assembled by JAA to win approval for expansion of Craig Municipal Airport. The team JAA put together included some of the most powerful local, state and national lobbyists.

    Sen. Jim King made an extraordinary gesture to stand with the residents against Mayor John Peyton, JAA and an incredible array of powerbrokers. He took time out of his legislative agenda to make a personal appeal to Jacksonville City Council members asking them to keep the promise made to residents that the airport would not be expanded.

    Two men now running to fill the late Jim King’s seat were also involved in this crucial fight. One of them, John Thrasher, was actually a lobbyist working on behalf of JAA, fighting against the interests of Arlington/Kernan residents. The other candidate, City Councilman Art Graham, became the key swing vote that turned the tide in the fight and secured an unlikely victory for us.

    Senate District 8 covers a large area and there are many important issues to consider in this race. Residents in the Arlington/Kernan areas should weigh this information carefully in with other considerations.

  3. Did Thrasher fly that plane he kept taking to Texas to buy desks in and out of Craig field ?

    • I remember that runway thing. Isnt that where Thrasher was representing that airport director John Clark who was the same one that hired his buddy Denise Lee to be a mystery shopper and pay her 20K to be a shopper at airport stores? We have quite a crowd right there: Thrasher, Clark, Lee. That would make quite a jail cell.