Monday, July 30, 2012

Report: Rep. Greg Steube works for law firm that lobbied Florida Legislature

State Rep. Greg Steube, R-Parrish, works for a law firm that lobbied the Florida Legislature during the 2012 session, according to a report released Monday.

Steube, who is running for re-election, was one of 10 lawmakers cited for such possible conflicts of interest in a report issued by Tallahassee-based Integrity Florida.

Steube works in the Sarasota offices of Becker and Poliakoff. On its website, the firm writes that "many of our lawyers and lobbyists have significant first-hand working knowledge of government practices and procedures."

Steube is not listed as one of the firm's lobbyists but instead work's in the firm's business litigation group.

The Herald/Times Tallahassee Bureau reports:
Legislators and top state officials accepted at least $101,449 in gifts from non-lobbyists so far in 2012, according to a report released Monday by Tallahassee-based Integrity Florida. 
Enterprise Florida, the state's economic development organization, for example, paid $12,724 for Lieutenant Gov. Jennifer Carrolls' trade mission to South Africa while The Aspen Institute, the Republican Attorney General Association and other groups have financed $8,860 in travel for Attorney General Pam Bondi. 
The gifts do not violate the state's controversial 2005 gift ban because they came from people or organizations that are not registered lobbyists. 
"It's okay for people to give gifts to each other...but we'd all like to have a gift to Taiwan," said Dan Krassner, executive director of Integrity Florida. "Would they get these gifts if they weren't lawmakers?" 
The report also named at least 10 lawmakers who worked for law firms that lobbied during the 2012 legislative session. 
They are: Sen. Oscar Braynon, D-Miami Gardens, Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, R-Coral Gables, Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, Sen. Joe Negron, R-Stuart, Rep. Joseph Abruzzo, D-Wellington, Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Trinity, Rep. Jose Diaz, R-Miami, Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach, Rep. Joe Gibbons, D-Hallandale Beach, Rep. Greg Steube, R-Parrish. 
Rep. Matt Gaetz said he, and some of the other legislators, worked for the firms previous to their time in public office and avoided contact with their firms' lobbyists. 
Out of the 160-member Legislature, only 12 lawmakers disclosed conflicts, a number that seems very low considering that almost all lawmakers have careers outside the Legislature, Krassner said.
Read the whole thing here.


  1. I thought lawyers had a code of ethics that prohibited one lawyer in the firm from representing a client having a claim against another person represented by another lawyer in the firm. They call it a conflict of interest. What is the difference? Iit is like Stuebe lobbying directly?.

  2. Regarding Steube, the apple doesn't fall from the tree.