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Shocker: Associated Industries backs Jeff Atwater for CFO and Adam Putnam for Agriculture

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Associated Industries of Florida Political Action Committee (AIFPAC) today announced its endorsement of Congressman Adam Putnam (R), candidate for Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and Senate President Jeff Atwater (R), candidate for Chief Financial Officer, in the General Election to be held on November 2, 2010.

“These candidates have a longstanding relationship with AIF and their leadership is exactly what we need as we elect a new Cabinet.  Congressman Putnam and Sen. Atwater both understand the important role business plays in creating a vibrant economy and both have consistently championed sound fiscal policies,” said Barney Bishop III, President and CEO of AIF. “Beginning with his service as a Representative from Polk County in the Florida Legislature to representing the State of Florida in Washington, Congressman Putnam has continued to be a solid pro-business ally.  Sen. Atwater implemented thoughtful economic policies and, for the past two years, has been able to balance our budget during Florida’s most difficult economic time.”

During his tenure in Florida Legislature, Congressman Putnam was a proven advocate of the state’s business community with an AIF Historical voting record of 94 percent. While in Washington, D.C., he has remained committed to pro-business policies with a Business Industry Political Action Committee (BIPAC) second session voting record of 100 percent in the 110th Congress and a National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) voting record of 89 percent during the 110th Congress.

“I am pleased to be supported by Associated Industries of Florida PAC and the business community. As a farmer and rancher I know the challenges Florida faces in emerging from these tough times. I’m committed to leading a focused, efficient Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services for the benefit of all Floridians and putting my experiences in agriculture and public policy to work on Florida’s Cabinet to create a magnet for job creation, research and development, and retaining our existing industries.” said Congressman Putnam.

Leading the Government Efficiency Committee, Sen. Atwater was able to reduce government spending at a record level to ensure tax dollars were spent wisely. While advocating for important financial programs like the Capital Investment Tax Credit Program, Sen. Atwater has also led efforts to preserve and restore the state’s environment.  He has an AIF historical voting record of 87 percent.

“I have had the opportunity to work with AIF for many years and I appreciate AIFPAC’s support.  In my role as Chairman of the Finance and Tax Committee, I was able to fight against calls for new taxes and secure billions of dollars in tax relief for Floridians. I pledge to follow the same fiscally conservative principles as CFO so Florida can rebound from the current economic crisis,” said Sen. Atwater.

AIFPAC conducts a detailed political and issues analysis, in addition to evaluating past voting records, prior to making decisions on endorsements of candidates. Candidates for Governor and Cabinet positions must also complete a questionnaire in order to be considered for AIFPAC endorsement.  AIF’s annual Voting Records report, a comprehensive summary of Florida legislators’ votes on policies affecting businesses, as well as the NAM and BIPAC reports for federal office holders, are also considered. The NAM is the largest industrial trade association in the United States which advocates on behalf of more than 100,000 companies and BIPAC, an independent and bipartisan organization, has supported pro-prosperity candidates since 1963. AIF has been the state affiliate for the NAM since 1951 and the state affiliate for BIPAC since 2006.

“AIFPAC supports candidates who further the interests of Florida’s business community and advocate for a free enterprise system,” said Michelle Mattox, Chief Political Officer for AIF.  “Congressman Putnam and Sen. Atwater are both committed to economic development in our state and understand the need to put the countless unemployed Floridians back to work. Their effective, pro-business leadership led to unanimous votes from our board in favor of endorsing these candidates in their respective races.”

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

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