Time for a Libertarian or Democrat to Beat Republican Clawson | James Pat Guerréro

The special election for Florida’s 19th U.S. Congressional District in the Republican primary is completed.  The winner is Curt Clawson of Bonita Springs, Florida, as of the evening of April 22, 2014.  Two tables show the voting statistics for Lee and Collier counties that comprise the 19th congressional district of Florida.

Curt Clawson
Counties Reg. Republicans Precincts Ballots Cast Voter Turn-Out
Lee[1] 150,208 112 50,082 33.34%
Collier[2] 54,140 36 20,257 37.42%


Representative in Congress Lee Total Votes Lee Percentage Collier Total Votes Collier Percentage
Lizbeth Benacquisto 14,883 29.77% 3,149 15.54%
Curt Clawson 17,454 34.92% 9,403 46.41%
Michael J. Dreikorn 6,328 12.66% 1,232 6.081%
Paige Kreegel 11,324 22.65% 6,438 31.78%
(Over Votes) 11 0.054%
(Under Votes 24 0.118%
Ballots Cast 50,082 33.34% 20,257 37.42%


Comparing the voting statistics to the campaign financing statistics, the following table.

Representative in Congress Total Votes and Total Percentage of Vote Campaign Total Receipts[3] Campaign Total Disbursements Campaign Cash on Hand
Lizbeth Benacquisto 18,032 (25.68%) $980,835 $796,888 $183,947
Curt Clawson 26,857 (38.25%) $2,864,734 $2,265,783 $598,951
Michael J. Dreikorn 7,560 (10.77%) $17,689 $15,055 $2,633
Paige Kreegel 17,762 (25.30%) $236,055 $205,128 $33,979


In summary, there is quite a wide margin of difference between Clawson’s campaign financing and the other candidates.  Clawson is wealthy buying his campaign to the Republican primary victory.  The U.S. Constitution allows this.  Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court unlimited the amount of contributions one can make to all candidates, keeping a contribution limit to any one candidate.  However, any one candidate can unlimitedly contribute to his own campaign while paying for the monitoring pollsters ensuring that he wins.

Clawson says he is conservative; Byron Donalds says he is conservative; Connie Mack says he is conservative.  By golly, he is not conservative.  Taking Clawson first, how can he be conservative while robbing the taxpayers through the federal government of corporate and pension bailout money, in the millions magnitude, to resolve his corporate debt?  Having built some fancy public-private partnership, here is what Clawson said regarding his corporate debt:

“I wish I’d been CEO of a company that didn’t have debt, but the one I took on had a lot of debt, so we had to fight our way through,” Clawson says. “Washington is in a similar position now … I have a little bit of experience in debt I did not create, and I want to bring that turnaround to Washington.”[4]

With respect to Hayes Lemmerz, essentially Clawson transfigured debt to pay off debt and used the debt to pay his hefty selling price.  Additionally, he dumped common stockholders in a lender equity deal via bankruptcy.  However, this is not real experience and continues the same way of handling debt – it still is there.  The majority of the electorate was older in age in this special election and opted not to believe that.

Secondly, the Connie Mack endorsement, although it was not essential, gave Clawson some star power.  Connie Mack has voted many tax hikes and corporate and pension bailouts.  The Penny Plan is foolhardy, means little, not well-thought out, and does not help the budget.

Once again, the Naples Tea Party, Inc., took a hit with Byron Donalds proclaiming Clawson is a conservative.  He decided not to run but instead endorsed Clawson.  What is up?  He just might become the new Chuka Umunna from southwestern France of rhino stylistic.  Additionally, at least, if something goes wrong with Clawson, like committing a foolish crime, Lee County will take the blame, again.

Oh well, madness prevails.  Looking at the next well-financed candidate, Benacquisto, she left some money in her purse, of course.  Everyone knows Benacquisto is smart.  Too many good Republican advisers and Charlie Crist types nearby at ear’s distance are on her side.  Cash on hand is $183,947.  This Florida Republican Party race was not that important.  With a clinging Florida Senate seat and opening multi-verse options now, Benacquisto has nothing to worry about.

Wishing for one of the great madmen, Paige Kreegel, who garnered a healthy second place standing in Collier County, he very nearly cornered a second place finish in Lee County.  The only thing that stopped him was the wealthy Clawson.  If Clawson had not been wealthy and a traveler from the Midwest, he would have won handily with at least 8.24% of Clawson’s campaign receipts.  Voters had paid too much attention to negative ads – the absolute three-point game Clawson plays.

Some caveats at the end of the race are as follows for Southwest Florida:

  1. Do not run against a wealthy candidate, unless a flagitious attorney can bring him down.
  2. Clawson is not conservative, but medium moderate.
  3. It was not a race.
  4. Benacquisto’s name brand endorsements, Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee, did not help.
  5. The statistics do not include the PAC data.
  6. The timing is ripe for a Libertarian or Democrat to beat a Republican.


[1] http://www.leeelections.com/results/el45a.txt

[2] http://www.naplesnews.com/election/2014/results/collier/

[3] http://www.fec.gov/finance/disclosure/candcmte_info.shtml

[4] http://www.news-press.com/story/news/politics/2014/03/29/curt-clawson-businessmans-life-has-been-series-of-turnarounds/7071977/


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