Curt Clawson Just the Latest Outsider to Win a GOP Primary in Florida

By: Jeff Henderson | Posted: April 23, 2014 3:55 AM
Pam Bondi, Curt Clawson, Rick Scott

Pam Bondi, Curt Clawson, Rick Scott

Curt Clawson’s win on Tuesday night in a special congressional primary is just the latest example of how the tea party movement has changed the Republican Party in Florida.

Clawson didn’t win because he’s a conservative. Every candidate who ran in the primary claimed to be a conservative. Sure, some big-name conservatives like Rand Paul and Michele Bachmann were on the Clawson bandwagon, but other prominent Republicans stood against him. Lizbeth Benacquisto had the likes of Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee endorsing her.

Like a host of Republicans across Florida in recent elections, Clawson reached into his own pocket to fund his campaign. The Florida businessman also stressed he was an outsider, someone who had never held political office before and it paid off dividends.

The tea party movement doesn’t just stand against politics as usual. It stands against politicians as usual, and highly regarded and well-known Republicans have been paying the price. Back in 2010, Rick Scott hitched his political star to the tea party and won because he wasn’t a career politician. After more than three decades in Florida politics, Bill McCollum simply couldn’t appear to be anything else than politics as usual. The same held true in the attorney general’s race that year where political rookie Pam Bondi beat out familiar Tallahassee figures Jeff Kottkamp and Holly Benson.

Even as the tea party took some hits nationally, it still remained a force in GOP politics in Florida in 2012. When Florida Republicans met to hold a presidential straw poll in Orlando, they went with Herman Cain instead of Rick Perry or Mitt Romney. Political novice Trey Radel beat out a bunch of politicians to win the congressional seat that’s now Clawson’s to lose. Electoral newcomer Ron DeSantis defeated a crowded Republican primary full of former officeholders. In the biggest political upset Florida’s seen in years, large animal veterinarian Ted Yoho defeated Cliff Stearns, who had been in Congress for 24 years.

It’s simply not enough in some Republican primaries to be a conservative. GOP primary voters have shown time and time again over the last four years that they are searching for alternatives outside of elected officials. Clawson’s win over Benacquisto and Paige Kreegel on Tuesday night is just the latest in a series of victories for businessmen over familiar faces in Republican primaries across Florida.

It’s something to keep in mind this year as Republican officeholders face primary challenges in congressional and legislative races. This trend could continue down the road as Republicans face presidential, Senate, gubernatorial, Cabinet and congressional primaries in 2016 and 2018. Five years after the birth of the tea party movement, Florida Republicans continue to back outsiders over established politicians in the primaries and, based on Clawson’s and David Jolly’s primary wins, this trend shows no signs of stopping.

Tallahassee-based political writer Jeff Henderson wrote this analysis exclusively for Sunshine State News.

Comments (5)

Bill Greiner
4:07PM APR 23RD 2014
None of these Bush followers care about the Bill of Rights - they have spent too many years working for the Bill of Wrongs!

Why did George W. Bush Fast Forward John Roberts straight past all the other justice's and appoint him Chief Justice of the Supreme Court?

Robert's had come to Florida and assisted Jeb Bush with those sloppy hanging chads and that true vote problem. So, he was in the Bush Klan.

George W. Bush fast forwarded Roberts to Chief Justice becuase it is the Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court that sole handily chooses the judges that set on the NSA Courts that is why. Of course it didn't hurt that the Obama's and the O'Bushes had Roberts in place to legitimize ObamaCare for them either.

Bondi, Scott, Charlie Crist, Obama, Curt Clawson and on and on all follow the drums of Jeb Bush =, his Common Core and Charter Schools takeovers for Guelen and his Muslin friends. It's just one big happy family until it comes time to pay the piper. Of curse they don't have to pay they just bill it to the taxpayers who are to stupid to suspect anything!
Paul Henry
10:05AM APR 23RD 2014
Let's hope that should he win in the general election he does not overlook the Bill of Rights as the other two (Bondi & Scott) have done.
Another Outsider Pays To Play!
7:50AM APR 23RD 2014
On February 11, 2014 even this publication questioned the 'Outsider' in CD 19 Race!

“Is Curt Clawson Really an 'Outsider' in CD 19 Race?”

BY: ALLISON NIELSEN | Posted: February 11, 2014 3:07 PM
Curt Clawson is billing himself as an outsider in the race for U.S. Rep. Trey Radel's old seat in Congress, but his connections to lobbyists seem to suggest he's not as removed from lobbying groups as he'd like others to believe.

Clawson has been particularly vocal about standing up to lobbyists and special-interest groups since he announced his run in January.

“I think we need to elect Congress people who can challenge thinking of a career politician, lobbyists and special interest groups,” he said. “I really am an outsider. I never considered running for office before this.”

But according to Fox 4 News, the former CEO of Hayes-Lemmerz International worked closely with lobbyists while navigating the company through two bankruptcies. During the second bankruptcy, Clawson paid $30,000 to lobbying group Ben Barnes to "help them with manufacturing and bankruptcy."


Clawson served as CEO from 2001-2012.
Another outsider like Rick Scott – who claims to be a successful businessman – squandering millions of our tax dollars, then jumping at the public trough with all their lying spins calling for pity like Rick Scott again dragging his mother out of the closet and taking about his poor childhood life – No mention of his years of Tom Hicks and George W. Bush schemes and involvements while “working for the city’s largest law firm, Johnson & Swanson, primarily representing companies in the health care, oil and gas and communication industries!”
Yea! Curtis Clawson bills himself as another outsider just Like Richard (Rick) Lynn Scott still bills himself as an outsider. REMEMBER: After law school, Gov. Scott stayed in Dallas, working for the city’s largest law firm, Johnson & Swanson, primarily representing companies in the health care, oil and gas and communication industries. Partner with GW Bush and Tom Hicks (#3 on GW Bush list to pay to play) In 1987, (The year IMC Medicare Fraud was uncovered by a low level government employee) while still practicing law, Gov. Scott (#65 on the GW Bush pay to play list) made an offer to purchase HCA, Inc. When the offer was rejected, along with the help of Jeb Bush, Gov. Scott and Richard Rainwater (#10 on GW List to pay to play) started Columbia Hospital Corporation with the remnants of (IMC) International Medical Centers – when Jeb’s partner Miguel Recarey fled the US under indictment for Medicare Fraud!
Like Rick Scott Mr. Clawson has got to have friends in high places in order to get the feds to suck up “$93 MILLION of its underfunded pension plan! EVERYONE SHOULD TRY THAT!
MR. CURTIS J. CLAWSON HAS BEEN THE PRESIDENT AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER OF HLI OPERATING CO. INC. AND HLI PARENT CO. INC. SINCE JUNE 2003. Mr. Clawson has been the Chief Executive Officer of Hayes Lemmerz International Inc., a subsidiary of HLI Parent Co. Inc. since August 2001. He served as President of Hayes Lemmerz International Inc. since August 2001. From November 1999 to August 2000, Mr. Clawson served as the President and Chief Operating Officer of American National Can Group, Inc. From May 1998 to November 1999, Mr. Clawson served as an Executive Vice President of American National Can Company, a subsidiary of Rexam Beverage Cans Americas (also known as American National Can Group, Inc.) Mr. Clawson served as the President of Beverage Cans Americas of American National Can Company, a subsidiary of American National Can Group Inc. Mr. Clawson joined American National Can Company in June 1998 as Senior Vice President of Beverage Cans Americas. Prior to joining American National Can Company, he served at Allied Signal Inc. from 1995 to 1997 as President of two separate business units. From March 1995 to January 1998, Mr. Clawson served as a Division President of AlliedSignal Inc. Prior to his experience with Allied Signal Inc., he held increasingly responsible senior level international positions at Arvin Industries, Inc. Mr. Clawson has 11 years of experience in the automotive industry. He began his career in automotive-related businesses at Arvin Industries where he spent 9 years, from 1986 to 1995, including: (i) a position as General Manager of the business unit that supplied Arvin exhaust products; (ii) tenures in sales and marketing; and (iii) tenures in production and plant management. From 1995 until the time that he joined American National Can, he served at Allied Signal, Inc. as President of Allieds Filters (Fram) and Spark Plugs (Autolite) Group, a $500 million automotive components business and then President of Allieds Laminate Systems Group. Mr. Clawson has been Chairman of Board of Directors of Hayes Lemmerz International Inc. since September 2001. He serves as the Chairman of HLI Operating Co. Inc. and HLI Parent Co Inc. MR. CLAWSON HAS BEEN A DIRECTOR OF INC. SINCE AUGUST 2001, HLI OPERATING CO. INC. AND HLI PARENT CO. INC. SINCE JUNE 2003. HE SERVED AS A DIRECTOR OF LEAR CORP. FROM NOVEMBER 9, 2009 TO MAY 16, 2012. He earned his Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees from Purdue University and a MASTERS OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION FROM HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL.
Mr. Clawson’s friend and fellow board member at Hayes Lemmerz International Inc. - Mr. HENRY D. G. WALLACE served as the PRINCIPAL EXECUTIVE OFFICER AT DIEBOLD, INCORPORATED from January 19, 2013 to June 6, 2013. Mr. Wallace served as the Chief Financial Officer and Group Vice President of Ford Motor Company ("Ford") from January 1999 to December 2001. Since 1998, he served as Vice President of Strategic Planning and Chief Financial Officer for Fords European Operations. From 1996 to 1997, he served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Mazda Motor Corporation and Group Vice President of Asia Pacific Operations since 1999. He worked for 30 years at Ford Motor Company from 1971 to 2001. Before serving Ford in this capacity, Mr. Wallace occupied a number of different positions, including Group Vice President, President of Ford Venezuela, and Chief Financial Officer since 2000. HE HAS BEEN NON-EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN OF LEAR CORP. “SINCE AUGUST 2010. HE HAS BEEN THE EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN OF DIEBOLD,” INCORPORATED SINCE JANUARY 21, 2013. He has been a Director of Lear Corp., since February 10, 2005. He has been a Director of Hayes Lemmerz International Inc., since 2003. “HE HAS BEEN AN INDEPENDENT DIRECTOR AT DIEBOLD, INCORPORATED SINCE APRIL 24, 2003.” HE SERVES AS A DIRECTOR OF HLI OPERATING CO INC. He served as a Director of Ambac Financial Group, Inc. from May 2004 to May 1, 2013. Mr. Wallace holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from the University of Leicester in England.

SEP 27, 2011 - Diebold voting machines can be hacked by remote control
A laboratory shows how an e-voting machine used by a third of all voters can be easily manipulated
Voting machines used by as many as a quarter of American voters heading to the polls in 2012 can be hacked with just $10.50 in parts and an 8th grade science education, according to computer science and security experts at the Vulnerability Assessment Team at Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois. The experts say the newly developed hack could change voting results while leaving absolutely no trace of the manipulation behind.

“We believe these man-in-the-middle attacks are potentially possible on a wide variety of electronic voting machines,” said Roger Johnston, leader of the assessment team “We think we can do similar things on pretty much every electronic voting machine.”
The Argonne Lab, run by the Department of Energy, has the mission of conducting scientific research to meet national needs. The Diebold Accuvote voting system used in the study was loaned to the lab’s scientists by VelvetRevolution(dot)us, of which the Brad Blog is a co-founder. Velvet Revolution received the machine from a former Diebold contractor.
Previous lab demonstrations of e-voting system hacks, such as Princeton’s demonstration of a viral cyber attack on a Diebold touch-screen system — back in 2006 — relied on cyber attacks to change the results of elections. Such attacks, according to the team at Argonne, require more coding skills and knowledge of the voting system software than is needed for the attack on the Diebold system.
Indeed, the Argonne team’s attack required no modification, reprogramming, or even knowledge, of the voting machine’s proprietary source code. It was carried out by inserting a piece of inexpensive “alien electronics” into the machine.

The Argonne team’s demonstration of the attack on a Diebold Accuvote machine is seen in a short new video which can be found on the internet. The team successfully demonstrated a similar attack on a touch-screen system made by Sequoia Voting Systems in 2009.
Diebold Elections Systems, Inc., is no more. At least in name.
After a year and a half of conversely trying to dump their failed voting unit and/or lying to customers about the reliability and security of their voting systems, corporate parent Diebold is giving up the ghost of its election business which, according to an analyst in a Reuters report, was "responsible for less than 10 percent of Diebold's revenue, and 100 percent of its bad publicity."

According to a company statement just released, Diebold Elections Systems, Inc., will become Premier Election Solutions as of today. The company president, David Byrd, who has overseen the disastrous election unit for some time, will stay on as president to go down with the ship, apparently.

BUT, Diebold sets up another entity and claims to sell off the voting machine business – just to get the Diebold name off the vote machine fixing scandals!

Diebold Sells U.S. Elections Systems Business to ES&S
September 3, 2009-

NORTH CANTON, Ohio, Diebold, Incorporated (NYSE: DBD) announced today that it has sold its U.S. election systems business, primarily consisting of its Allen, Texas-based subsidiary, Premier Election Solutions, Inc., to Election Systems & Software, Inc. (ES&S), a leading company in the election systems industry. The sale was consummated on September 2. (SALE? What Sale? - It was all smoke and mirrors!)

Diebold has agreed to sell its elections systems business for $5 million in cash plus future cash payments representing 70% of any cash collected on the outstanding U.S. election systems business accounts receivable as of August 31, 2009. As a result of this transaction, Diebold expects to recognize a pre-tax loss in the range of $45 million to $55 million. The pre-tax loss includes the assets and liabilities of the business, certain retained legal liabilities, and other transaction costs. This business will be reported as a discontinued operation. Excluding the impact of this divestiture, Diebold's full-year earnings per share outlook for 2009 remains unchanged.

Diebold entered the U.S. election systems business after purchasing Global Election Systems, Inc., in January 2002. Since early 2006, Diebold has identified its U.S. elections systems business as non-core to its operations and has been pursuing strategic alternatives to ownership, including divestiture. In August 2007, Diebold announced it had realigned its U.S. elections systems subsidiary to operate as an independent entity and renamed the company, Premier Election Solutions. Since that time, Diebold has maintained only a financial interest in Premier with no direct operational involvement. In 2008, Premier generated $88.2 million in revenue, or 2.8 percent of Diebold's total reported revenue for the year.

The company's Brazilian subsidiary, which manufactures voting terminals for Brazil's national elections board, the Tribunal Superior Electoral (TSE), is not affected by the sale of Premier Election Solutions.

Diebold, Incorporated is a global leader in providing integrated self-service delivery and security systems and services. Diebold employs more than 17,000 associates with representation in nearly 90 countries worldwide and is headquartered in Canton, Ohio, USA. Diebold is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol 'DBD.' For more information, visit the company's Web site to learn more about Diebold's 150-year history.

SOURCE Diebold, Incorporated
5:13AM APR 23RD 2014
No re-elections, no tenure, no cronies.
4:50AM APR 23RD 2014
Funding their own camps. With a greedy eye on the tax trough.

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