A Florida Plan: How The Payday Lending Industry Bought Florida’s Political Establishment

According to an Allied Progress analysis of state and federal campaign finance data, the payday, title, and short-term lending industry has contributed at least $2,556,457 to Florida candidates and political parties since 2009. This figure includes both challengers and incumbents running for U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate, Florida State House of Representatives, Florida State Senate, Governor, Attorney General, Chief Financial Officer, and Agriculture Commissioner, as well as contributions to the Republican and Democratic state parties.

As the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) prepares to announce new rules designed to rein in the worst abuses of predatory payday lenders, members of the Florida congressional delegation have come under increasing scrutiny in recent weeks for pushing the CFPB and their colleagues to expand the problematic “Florida model” of payday loan regulation, which has been a disaster for consumers and a dream for lenders. Riddled with loopholes, the “Florida model” has led to the average borrower being saddled with nearly nine loans each year bearing 300%+ interest rates, and one-in-three borrowers being burdened with a dozen or more of these crippling loans.

Nearly the entire Florida U.S. congressional delegation signed a letter last year encouraging CFPB director, Richard Cordray, to adopt the disastrous “Florida model.” Many of them also sponsored or cosponsored H.R. 4018, which would gut the CFPB’s upcoming payday loan regulations by delaying those new rules for years, while instead encouraging other states to adopt Florida-style laws. This massive outpouring of support from Florida politicians for such an unpopular industry has left many scratching their heads.

Of the $2,556,457 given to Florida politicians and political parties by payday lenders since 2009, more than one-third of the money ($970,050) came from members of the Florida-based MacKechnie family and their payday lending company, Amscot Financial. In 1998 Amscot Financial plead guilty to civil racketeering charges and as part of the plea agreement stemming from these charges, the company’s founder, Ian MacKechnie, Sr., was banned for life from selling auto insurance in Florida.

At every level, Florida’s political establishment is awash in payday lender campaign cash. It is no wonder the state’s political class is pulling out all of the stops to keep the CFPB from cracking down on this predatory industry.

Total Campaign Contributions, Broken Down by Office

U.S. House and U.S. Senate BREAK $671,600
Florida State House and State Senate $358,520
Statewide Office $76,390
State Political Parties $1,449,947
Total: $2,556,457

Candidates for U.S. House and U.S. Senate (2009-2016)

Candidate BREAK Party BREAK Contributions BREAK Office
Adams, Sandy R $1,000 House
Bilirakis, Gus R $14,800 House
Brown, Corrine D $12,000 House
Boyd, Allen D $14,000 House
Buchanan, Vernon R $1,000 House
Castor, Kathy D $17,000 House
Crenshaw, Ander R $25,500 House
Crist, Charlie I $29,200 Senate
Curbelo, Carlos R $1,000 House
DeSantis, Ron R $5,000 House
Deutch, Ted D $14,500 House
Diaz-Balart, Mario R $3,000 House
Edwards, Lori D $1,000 House
Frankel, Lois D $10,000 House
Garcia, Joe D $12,000 House
Grabelle, Justin R $1,000 House
Graham, Gwen D $7,700 House
Grayson, Alan D $10,300 House/Senate
Haridopolos, Mike R $7,000 Senate
Hasner, Adam R $1,000 House
Hastings, Alcee D $110,700 House
Jolly, David R $3,000 House
Klein, Ron D $27,400 House
Kosmas, Suzanne D $14,000 House
Meek, Kendrick D $72,800 Senate
Lemieux, George R $2,500 House
Miller, Jeff R $3,000 House
Murphy, Patrick D $51,000 House/Senate
Nelson, Bill D $5,000 Senate
Nugent, Richard R $12,200 House
Posey, Bill R $26,500 House
Rivera, David R $1,000 House
Rooney, Tom R $4,000 House
Ross, Dennis R $31,850 House
Rubio, Marco R $15,000 Senate
Schultz, Debbie Wasserman D $50,600 House
Sink, Alex D $9,750 House
Soto, Darren D $2,000 House
Thompson, Geraldine D $2,700 House
Southerland, Steve R $13,000 House
Webster, Daniel R $21,100 House
West, Allen R $1,000 House
Young, C.W. Bill R $3,500 House
Total: $671,600

Candidates for Florida State House and State Senate (2009-2014)

Candidate BREAK Party Break Contributions Break Office
Abruzzo, Joseph D $2,000 House District 085
Adkins, Janet R $400 House District 011
Ahern, Larry R $1,500 House District 066
Albritton, Ben R $2,500 House District 066
Altman, Thad R $4,000 Senate District 024
Artiles, Frank R $1,500 House District 118
Aubuchon, Gary R $500 House District 074
Avila, Bryan R $1,000 House District 111
Barreiro, Gustavo R $500 House District 112
Baxley, Dennis R $1,000 House District 023
Bean, Aaron Paul R $3,000 Senate District 004
Benacquisto, Lizbeth R $3,500 Senate District 027
Bernard, Mack D $1,000 House District 084
Beshears, Halsey R $500 House District 007
Bileca, Michael R $1,500 House District 115
Bogdanoff, Ellyn R $8,250 Senate District 034
Bovo Jr, Esteban R $1,000 House District 110
Boyd, Debbie D $500 House District 011
Boyd, Jim R $1,500 House District 071
Bradley, Rob R $1,500 Senate District 007
Brandes, Jeffrey R $5,500 Senate District 022
Braynon II, Oscar D $2,500 Senate District 033
Brodeur, Jason R $4,000 House District 028
Brooks, Robert R $1,000 House District 047
Broxson, Douglas R $1,000 House District 003
Burgin, Rachel R $2,100 House District 056
Caldwell, Matt R $2,500 House District 079
Cannon Jr., R. Dean R $3,000 House District 035
Carroll, Jennifer R $500 House District 013
Clarke-Reed, Gwyndolen D $500 House District 092
Clemens, Jeff D $1,750 House District 089
Coley, Marti R $2,500 House District 005
Combee, Neil R $1,000 House District 039
Corcoran, Richard R $4,000 House District 045
Costello, Fred R $1,000 House District 025
Couriel, John Daniel R $500 Senate District 035
Crisafulli, Steve R $3,750 House District 032
Cruz, Janet D $2,000 House District 062
Cummings, William Travis R $1,000 House District 018
Danish, Mark Alan R $500 House District 063
Davis, Daniel R $3,120 House District 015
Davis, Joshua I $100 House District 065
Dean Sr., Charlie R $1,000 Senate District 005
Dentel, Karen Castor D $2,000 House District 030
Detert, Nancy R $1,500 Senate District 028
Diaz De La Portilla, Miguel R $2,150 Senate District 036
Diaz De La Portilla, Renier R $500 House District 103
Diaz, Leyva, Daniel R $2,000 House District 112
Diaz, Jose R $500 House District 116
Domino, Carl R $500 House District 082
Dorworth, Christopher R $5,250 House District 029
Drake, Brad R $1,500 House District 005
Dudley, Dwight D $500 House District 068
Eagle, Dane R $2,000 House District 077
Edwards, Katie D $500 House District 098
Eisnaugle, Eric R $4,500 House District 044
Evers, Greg R $7,100 Senate District 002
Fant, Jay R $1,000 House District 015
Farias, Johnny D $100 House District 112
Farkas, Frank R $2,000 House District 068
Fasano, Mike R $2,000 House District 036
Fetterman, Adam D $500 House District 084
Fitzenhagen, Heather Dawes R $500 House District 078
Fitzgerald, Keith D $1,000 House District 069
Flores, Anitere R $2,000 Senate District 038
Ford, Clay R $2,000 House District 002
Frank, Stacy D $500 House District 057
Fresen, Erik R $4,000 House District 114
Frishe, Jim R $1,000 Senate District 022
Fullwood, Reggie D $500 House District 013
Gaetz, Don R $4,500 Senate District 001
 Gaetz, Matt R $500 House District 004
Galvano, Bill R $1,500 Senate District 026
Garcia, Rene R $1,500 Senate District 038
Gardiner, Andy R $4,000 Senate District 013
Gibbons, Joe D $1,500 House District 100
Gibson, Audrey D $500 Senate District 009
Glorioso, Richard R $500 House District 062
Gonzalez, Eduardo R $500 House District 111
Goodson, Tom R $2,700 House District 050
Grant, James R $1,000 House District 064
Grant, Michael R $500 House District 076
Grimsley, Denise R $3,500 Senate District 021
Hager, Bill R $1,000 House District 089
Haridopolos, Mike R $2,500 Senate District 026
Harrison, Shawn R $3,000 House District 060
Hays, Alan R $3,000 Senate District 020
Heinzelman, James I $200 House District 045
Heller, Bill D $500 House District 052
Hill, Mike R $1,000 House District 002
Hill, Robert D $500 House District 007
Holder, Doug R $3,000 House District 070
Hooper, Ed R $5,000 House District 067
Horner, Mike R $3,000 House District 079
Hudson, Matt R $500 House District 080
Hukill, Dorothy R $6,500 Senate District 008
Ingram, Clay R $1,500 House District 001
Jacobs, Kristin D $500 House District 096
Joyner, Arthenia D $2,000 Senate District 018
Julien, John Patrick D $1,500 House District 107
Kiar, Martin David D $500 House District 097
Kreegel, Paige R $1,500 House District 072
Kriseman, Rick D $1,500 House District 053
Latvala, Chris R $1,500 House District 067
Latvala, Jack R $11,500 Senate District 020
Lee Jr, Larry D $500 House District 084
Lee, Tom R $5,000 Senate District 024
Legg, John M R $2,000 Senate District 017
Logan, Ana Rivas R $500 House District 114
Long, Janet D $1,000 House District 051
Lopez-Cantera, Carlos R $1,000 House District 113
Mayfield, Debbie R $1,500 House District 080
Maymon, David R $500 House District 091
McBurney Jr., Charles R $1,000 House District 016
McKeel, Seth R $2,000 House District 040
Metz, Larry R $1,500 House District 032
Molloy, Dan R $500 House District 057
Montford, Bill D $2,500 Senate District 006
Moraitis, George R $2,500 House District 093
Negron, Joe R $8,000 Senate District 032
Nehr, Peter R $3,650 House District 048
Nelson, Bryan R $1,500 House District 038
Norman, Jim R $1,000 Senate District 012
Nunez, Jeanette R $3,000 House District 119
Oelrich, Steve R $1,500 Senate District 014
Oliva, Jose R $2,500 House District 110
Pafford, Mark D $500 House District 086
Passidomo, Kathleen R $1,000 House District 106
Patronis Jr., Jimmy Theo R $1,500 House District 006
Pena, Marco R $500 House District 049
Perry, Keith R $200 House District 022
Perry, Warren Keith R $1,000 House District 021
Peters, Kathleen Mick R $3,000 House District 069
Pigman, Edwin R $500 House District 055
Pilon, Raymond R $500 House District 072
Plakon, D. Scott R $2,000 House District 029
Precourt, Stephen R $2,500 House District 041
Raburn, Jacob William R $2,500 House District 057
Rader, Kevin D $3,000 Senate District 027
Randolph, Scott Allen D $1,000 House District 036
Raschein, Holly Merrill R $500 House District 120
Raulerson, Daniel R $2,500 House District 058
Ray, Lake R $1,000 House District 017
Reed, Betty D $500 House District 061
Rich, Nan H D $1,000 Senate District 034
Richter, Garrett R $1,500 Senate District 023
Ring, Jeremy D $2,000 Senate District 032
Rodrigues, Ray R $1,000 House District 076
Rogers, Hazelle D $500 House District 095
Rooney Jr, Patrick R $1,500 House District 085
Rouson, Darryl Ervin D $2,000 House District 055
Sachs, Maria D $1,000 Senate District 034
Samarrai, Remzey Paul R $50 House District 022
Sands, Franklin D $1,000 House District 098
Santiago, David R $1,000 House District 027
Saunders, Ron D $1,000 Senate District 039
Schenck, Robert R $4,000 House District 044
Seefeldt, Terri R $500 House District 031
Shaw, Sean D $1,000 House District 061
Simmons, David R $5,500 Senate District 010
Simpson, Wilton R $5,500 Senate District 018
Siplin, Victoria D $500 Senate District 012
Skidmore, Kelly D $500 Senate District 025
Smith, Chris D $2,500 Senate District 031
Snyder, William R $1,000 House District 082
Sobel, Eleanor D $500 Senate District 033
Soto, Darren Michael D $2,500 Senate District 014
Spano, Ross R $2,500 House District 059
Sprowls, Chris R $1,000 House District 065
Stafford, Cynthia D $1,000 House District 109
Stargel, Kelli R $2,500 Senate District 015
Steube, Greg R $500 House District 073
Storms, Ronda R $2,500 Senate District 010
Taylor, Dwayne D $1,000 House District 027
Thompson, Geraldine D $1,500 Senate District 012
Thrasher, John R $6,500 Senate District 008
Thurston Jr, Perry D $500 House District 094
Tobia, John Joseph R $2,750 House District 031
Trujillo, Carlos R $2,500 House District 105
Trumbull, Jay R $500 House District 006
Van Zant, Charles R $500 House District 019
Waldman, James D $2,500 House District 095
Watson Jr, Clovis D $550 House District 020
Weatherford, Will R $4,500 House District 061
Weinstein, Mike R $500 House District 019
Williams, Alan D $2,000 House District 008
Williams, Mike R $250 House District 007
Wood, John R $2,500 House District 041
Workman, Ritch R $5,000 House District 030
Young, Bill R $1,500 House District 068
Young, Dana R $4,100 House District 060
Zimmermann, Carl D $500 House District 065
  Total: $358,520

Candidates for Florida Statewide Office (2009-2014)

Candidate BREAK Party BREAK Contributions BREAK Office
Aronberg, Dave  D $4,750  Attorney General
Atwater, Jeff R $22,600 Chief Financial Officer
Ausley, Loranne D $2,000 Chief Financial Officer
Benson, Anna Holliday R $400 Attorney General
Bondi, Pamela R $18,500 Attorney General
Crist, Charlie D $3,500 Governor
Maddox, Scott D $500 Agriculture Commissioner
McCollum, Bill R $2,500 Governor
Putnam, Adam R $8,140 Agriculture Commissioner
 Rich, Nan D $500 Governor
Scott, Rick R $8,500 Governor
Sink, Alex D $4,500 Governor
Total: $76,390

Florida Political Parties (2009-2014)

Party BREAK Contributions
Florida Republican Party $1,083,447
Florida Democratic Party $366,500
Total: $1,449,947

 

 

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