At the beginning of this decade, the Florida Legislature was the Dean Cannon and Mike Haridopolos show.
Dean Cannon, presiding over the House, and Mike Haridopolos over the Senate. Some say Cannon was the alpha in the relationship, especially after Cannon outmaneuvered Haridopolos at the end of the 2011 legislative session.
In 2012, their terms ended and their lives as term-limited legislators began. Cannon’s began big with the announcement of his own lobbying firm, Capitol Insight, in partnership with another former House Speaker, Larry Cretul. Haridopolos began lobbying, too, though not as quickly, and not on his own.
The former Senate President began lobbying for Railex LLC in February 2013, and just about one year later has joined with lobbying firm Tsamoutales Strategies. His title, chief strategy officer. The media frenzy surrounding this announcement? Eh. Let’s just say it is a noticeable difference from the brouhaha reporters made of Cannon’s move.
Apart from a paid release on SayfieReview.com, Haridopolos’ new job has barely raised an eyebrow.
The Florida Times-Union‘s Matt Dixon posted a blurb on his blog, the AP’s Gary Fineout tweeted the news, too, and Sunshine State News ran an item repeating much of what was in the press release.
Comparatively, a few acres of forest were spent on paper following the launch of Cannon’s firm (not to mention, a bill was passed and signed into law to make sure that others legislators didn’t follow suit.) Cannon’s firm, which has since added lobbyists Alan Suskey, Richard Reeves, and Rheb Harbison, continues to receive more than its fair share of press coverage.
Yet news of a former Senate President setting up shop on Adam Street generates nary a peep.
It would seem, even out of office, Cannon continues to upstage Haridopolos.