Norman Braman told Miami politicians once they were making a mistake giving public money to a wealthy team owner, and now he's speaking up again. Unlike his ultimately losing fight against the new Marlins Park, this time he's pledging to kill any deal to renovate the Dolphins stadium with tax dollars.
"You've got the same commissioners that voted for the Marlins transaction that are voting for this one," Braman tells CBS4. "This is just a giveaway. There is no difference between this and the Marlins deal."
Back in 2009, Braman was the loudest voice preaching what most of us already knew: That the Marlins aren't trustworthy, and the stadium deal they were pitching blew major ass. He ultimately failed in his lawsuit to stop the building of the current huge paperweight that sits on top of the Orange Bowl's dead body -- a deal that will in the end cost the city $2.4 billion and haunt them for years.
Now Braman's gunning for one of his main allies in that fight -- County Mayor Carlos Gimenez, who won his seat largely thanks to his record of opposing the Marlins deal.
"I think the Mayor (Carlos Gimenez) forgot why he was elected Mayor," Braman tells CBS 4.
Though many -- including what looks to be a majority of county commissioners today -- have argued that the Sun Life deal is a much better package for taxpayers, Braman ain't having it. In fact, he argues it's actually worse for one simple fact: Dolphins owner Stephen Ross is worth $4 billion, much more than Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria.
"I think this transaction is even worse than the Marlins transaction simply because of the ability of the owner, Stephen Ross, to pay for this himself," he says.
Braman hasn't specified exactly how he plans to oppose the plan, but even if commissioners approve a public vote on the deal today he's going to wait and see how legislators in Tallahassee vote on a tax hike. If Tally backs the deal, too, then he'll start pouring cash into an opposition campaign.
"It's a rip-off and I will do what I can," he says.
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