The quarterly campaign finance reports for Florida political parties were released late yesterday, and the Republican Party of Florida out-raised the Florida Democratic Party by more than four-to-one: $5.2 million to $1.2 million, between January and March. Here are five things I’ve noticed while combing through the spreadsheets:
- The entity with the most reported contributions to the GOP appears to have been Florida Power and Light Co., which gave $255,000. That narrowly edged out Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, which gave $250,000.
- Other big-time GOP donors include political committees — one for Florida Realtors gave $190,000, and an outfit called Florida Jobs PAC gave $200,000. Florida Jobs has taken in $650,000 so far this year: $250,000 from FPL and the rest from Publix Supermarkets.
- Both parties reported six-figure contributions from Blue Cross within days of each other in late March: $100,000 to the Dems on March 28 and $100,000 to the GOP on March 31. That one contribution nearly made Blue Cross the Democrats’ largest contributor so far this year.
- But that honor goes to Jacksonville-based STM Consulting, which gave a total of $120,000.
- The GOP reported a $50,000 contribution from the GEO Group on March 24, just days before a plan surfaced to privatize prisons in South Florida. GEO would have been a top contender for the contract.