Florida Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis—yes, he serves both roles because why wouldn't the CFO of a government also be the fire marshal—is an aggressively Republican Republican with a name that sounds like a “Harry Potter” mob boss. He's also just come out with a new proposal to hand over gobs of Florida taxpayer money to the indicted Donald Trump.
Yes, Jimmy "Da Snitch But Not That Kind" Patronis is so outraged by Trump having to stand trial for alleged crimes that he's now proposing Florida's government pay for Trump's legal defense. His proposal comes in the form of a bizarre social media post in which Patronis obviously tried to mimic Trump’s voice:
There is a former REPUBLICAN PRESIDENT OF THE U.S. sitting on the stand RIGHT NOW in BLUE NEW YORK. There is NO VICTIM in the case and the judge already ruled against him before the trial starts. Virtually everyone running for President against Trump has said these charges are BS. (The judge literally said "I do not want to hear" what Trump has to say!) I generated $1.1 BILLION in interest in our Treasury. Trust me we have PLENTY OF MONEY to defend SERIOUS FLORIDA CANDIDATES from prosecution by the DOJ and other PARTISAN PROSECUTORS. Everyone (I mean that literally!) should be OUTRAGED by how our justice system is being weaponized by partisan, LEFT WING DEMOCRATS. I am more committed than ever to setting up this legal defense fund! Talking to members ASAP!
Yikes. There are tryhards and then there are tryhards, but Patronis appears so desperate for Trump's attention that he might soon try putting on one of Melania's dresses and popping out of a Mar-a-Lago cake.
Buddy, tone it down a little. You're the state fire marshal; you should know how dangerous it is to crawl so far up Trump's *** you can't see daylight anymore.
There's a lot to go through in that little rant, which with the all-caps and exclamation points genuinely might be something Patronis copied out from Trump himself. There are the usual lies: The "victims" in the case are the New York taxpayers Trump cheated and the banks Trump defrauded in order to secure better interest rates than his financial situation would have allowed.
$1.1 billion is not actually a lot of money in state government—according to Trump, his Florida house is worth more than that—and is not a windfall when the state is simultaneously facing a major lawsuit from the Walt Disney Company and, more importantly, an ongoing crisis in state homeowners' insurance markets.
And why is it in Florida's interest to throw money at Donald Trump in particular? Trump is allegedly worth enough to easily pay his bills, and he's historically been relying on both the Republican Party and his own campaign donors to pay those legal expenses so that he doesn't have to. What does Patronis think the state gets out of this, other than that he himself gets to express a comic degree of corruption-enabling obedience to Dear Leader?
The man who attempted to topple the United States government rather than abide his own reelection loss based much of his 2016 campaign on "Lock Her Up," the theory that the Department of Justice should be arresting and imprisoning anyone he accused of doin' crimes. But it's the "LEFT WING DEMOCRATS" who are out of control, Jimmy?
Look, I don't tell the Florida government how to run its business. If Florida thinks the CFO of the state can play state fire marshal on the side, due to neither job apparently being enough work by itself, that's fine. The state keeps getting hit with news that this-or-that elected official may be almost comic book corrupt, or be a fixture of cocaine orgies, or may have overseen record-breaking Medicare fraud, but Jimmy Hufflepuff here only gets riled by this?
What a suck-up. But what this most shows is that Florida's Republican establishment is giving up on Gov. Ron DeSantis' political ambitions and is now more explicitly taking Trump's side, perhaps in the hopes of being appointed fire marshal of the U.S. Supreme Court or whatever nonsense position they're angling for in a new Trump administration.
It'll be fun to see whether DeSantis is on board with this "let's have our state pay Donald Trump's legal bills" plan. And whether he’ll change his mind on that after the Iowa caucuses.
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