Mike Haridopolos hasn’t been a Senate candidate for long.
But the Florida Senate president, who hopes to challenge Sen. Bill Nelson (D) in 2012, has already become a favorite target of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.
The Republican was named to the DSCC’s Hall of Shame on Monday after the Associated Press reported that he earned $152,000 in taxpayer funds for a political book that hasn’t yet been published.
“Before Mike Haridopolos does any more public ranting against government spending, he should get his own financial house in order,” DSCC spokesman Eric Schultz said. “Just one week after being admonished for his failure to properly disclose his finances, he is now trying to pull another fast one on Florida taxpayers. Mike Haridopolos does not belong in the Senate; he belongs in Ethics 101.”
The AP found that in 2003, Haridopolos secured a contact with a Florida community college to spend four years writing a book instead of performing his previous duties as a lecturer. He was paid more than $38,000 in taxpayer funds each year, but the ultimate draft he submitted “doesn’t come close to meeting the original contract’s call for a publishable, textbook-quality look at the development of the Florida Legislature, state constitution, the governor’s office and judiciary from pre-statehood until present,” according to the AP.
In an unrelated case, a Florida Senate legislative panel voted to send Haridopolos a letter of admonition for failing to fully disclose his financial interests from 2004 to 2008.