Leading Brow Republican: GOP Must Prevent Future Economic Ruin


By Ed Pozzuoli





At stake isn’t just the future of the Republican Party, but also the future of our country. Just like the broadcast of a sporting event, all of the pundits and media elite provided analysis and play-by-play of the most recent government shutdown and debt ceiling debate, and declared winners and losers. Well the results were clear, the American people lost.

The media have declared the Republican Party all but dead. Is the media elite’s obituary of the Republican Party accurate? Has the Republican brand been irreparably harmed by the shutdown? The answer is “yes” but only if this process is solely about scoring political points. The hardball tactics of President Obama and Harry Reid scored short term but only because Republicans tried to play the game of small politics instead of engaging in big ideas and solutions.

The best that can be said about the state of politics in Washington, D.C. is that the President and Congress avoided a severe self-inflicted wound i.e.: defaulting on the country’s financial obligations. The events of the past month illustrated a horribly broken system of government that is unable to accomplish anything that will make a positive impact on our country, our debt, or the lives of our citizens.

The American people are exhausted from “doomsday” scenarios and desperate for an adult-like debate over serious issues that need solving. While our Congress procrastinates until the next “fiscal cliff,” let’s propose something drastic. An honest conversation about what is plaguing our country. It goes beyond our debt and into the lives of our neediest citizens.

It’s about a free people having the power to determine and control their personal destiny. It’s about self-determination and individual opportunity. The Republican Party should do all it can to promote and protect individual freedom. Even when we disagree, in fact especially when we disagree, personal freedoms and individual self-determination must be sacrosanct.

The real debate that Republicans should be leading is about the role and scope of government. Our Framers understood that “a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this; you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place obligate it to control itself.” Our debate must, thus, include and focus on the obligation of the government to control itself. Our very freedom depends on limiting Washington.

This battle is currently lost because, as Democrats talked of their view of big, unbridled government (its shutdown, debt default, etc.), Republicans fought (each other) on the edges, on small matters — repealing the medical device tax and (correctly) imposing Obamacare on Congress.

Our fight is about framing the argument that the bigger the government the less individual freedom we enjoy. Our message must be more than a repeal of Obamacare, although it’s a great start. Think big–Obamacare is an entitlement, a tax, and most importantly a usurper of freedom. Obamacare forces, coerces, and punishes every American to pay more for less health coverage, and dictates that each of us purchases coverage we neither need nor want. Jobs are lost as business are forced to pay more, reduce hours and employees. Small business fails to grow, as it wades into the tens of thousands pages of regulation, and dares not expand beyond 50 employees.

But Republicans need to do more than to grouse about Obamacare, they need to offer an alternative that is market-based and provides incentives to big and small business to employ and provide health care coverage to its employees and their families.

Republicans must embrace the kind of individual achievement that has, for instance, driven an American energy renaissance. It has involved individuals taking risks, thus bringing innovation through new technology. It’s the freedom to risk private capital that has long made the United States the world’s largest economy, and increasingly one of the largest energy producers in the world. Instead of encouraging private job producing activity, the President stands as an obstacle to needed projects like the Keystone Pipeline. His blocking of the Keystone Pipeline is but one example of a broken system that fails to rein in the power of government.

The greatest example of our broken system is Washington’s inability to control entitlements. Republicans need to honor our promise to older citizens while addressing the heavy burdens placed on younger citizens through reforms to entitlements. Such reforms must be debated with honesty, and with acknowledgement that without reforms to entitlements that allow the young to chart their own retirement and healthcare path, our country could go broke.

The big debate of our time—should and can the federal government control itself and entitlement reform– is the real battle in this fight. Can the Republicans set aside small things and answer the bell for the big fight? The real debate is Washington’s obligation to control itself. Survival of the Republican Party isn’t the only thing at stake—the survival of our system of government is on the line as well.

(Ed Pozzuoli is one of  the most influential Republicans in Broward County. 

He is a native New Yorker proving some of them are not Democrats. A graduate of the University of Miami, he was president of the prestigious Iron Arrow Honor Society.  I went to UM and I can assure you that this is a big deal.

Pozzuoli was a county attorney and then ran his own Broward law firm.  He was also Broward’s GOP chair and a member of the state Republican Party’s executive committee.  A member of the Bush recount legal team, Pozzuoli handled the reapportionment litigation for the Florida Senate in 2002.  He was chair or co-chair for the state campaigns of Jeb Bush and Charlie Crist.  He was the regional chair for the Rudy Giuliani presidential campaign Most recently, he served as a campaign advisor to Ambassador Jon Huntsman during the 2012 Republican Primaries. 

A accomplished trial attorney, Pozzuoli is the managing partner of the GOP law firm Tripp Scott. Wife Gina Rodriguez Pozzuoli is also a lawyer and once was a member of the Judicial Nomination Commission in Broward….By Buddy Nevins )




24 Responses to “Leading Brow Republican: GOP Must Prevent Future Economic Ruin”

  1. Impressive says:

    Ed do what you do best make money playing the minority party guy. Hurry know john Hage needs his latte filled.

    “Pozzuoli was a county attorney and then ran his own Broward law firm. He was also Broward’s GOP chair and a member of the state Republican Party’s executive committee. ”
    One of the most influential republicans in Broward, lol, that is as impressive as bring manager at muvico and getting your friends matinee tickes.
    Who have he and his successors got elected locally?

  2. Watching says:

    Interesting points and only the republican party can blame itself what has happened to it.

    The problem is that the republican party is seriously split party, social issues vs. financial issues. The tea party is so entrenched in social issues that it loses the financial points and they control the party.

    If the republican party could drop much of the social posturing, become more moderate, start to compromise and really concentrate on financial issues, it can become the party of the majority of Americans, those in the Center of the Political Spectrum. In other words former republicans that became Independents cause they couldn’t stand it anymore.

    But I doubt it. Too many holier than now members can’t see the forest for the trees, and will continue to drag republicans down a losing course.

    Next up January/February 2014 budget deadlines. Let’s see if they learned anything. I would bet against it and I never bet anything but a sure thing.

  3. Ha Ha Ha says:

    Exactly where the federal government needs to better control itself is very well documented now, thanks to Edward Snowden. The Fourth Amendment has been shredded:

    “Today, no telephone in America makes a call without leaving a record with the NSA. Today, no Internet transaction enters or leaves America without passing through the NSA’s hands,” Snowden said in a statement Thursday.

    “Our representatives in Congress tell us this is not surveillance. They’re wrong.”




  4. Same Old Same Old says:

    This could have come out of a time capsule that was buried before the Kennedy – Nixon election. For my entire adult life the GOP has ranted about the evils of big government and out of control Federal spending. However when they were the party in power nothing changed. I believe that until the GOP acknowledges the changing demographics of America they are not going to win another national election. They are still largely the party of conservative white Americans and without gerrymandered districts would not only not have the White House and Senate but probably would be the minority party in the House.

  5. Broward Dem says:

    The Republican Party’s social politics suck, their economic principles are unethical and undefendable and had a devastating effect on our economy. If you are a greedy ahole who does not care about his fellow man or perhaps detests certain portions of the population than the Republican party has a place for you.

  6. The Truth says:

    The Truth is that this country and state is split approximately 50/50. The truth is that no one party can get everything it wants. The truth is that compromise is the only way forward which means that Republicans have to give on taxes and Democrats have to give on entitlements. Ed Pozzuoli needs to use his clout in with the Republicans to foster moderate, compromise positions that everybody can buy into. That is the truth.

  7. Duke says:

    Is it too late for republicans to undo social security and medicare?
    Your party is too fragmented. The TEA partiers are the same old far right wingnut fringe. John Boehner is a joke. Ted Cruz is a clown. Just wait until the 2014 midterms. Who ya’ll all got to take on Hillary in 2016 besides Santorum?

  8. Commissioner Angelo Castillo says:


    Ed Pozzuoli is my friend, I respect him and sometimes he’s even my lawyer. A very smart and level headed guy. He’s likes to find answers to problems, no wonder we get along.

    Ed wants his party to frame the argument that bigger government takes away freedoms we enjoy. He cites an inability to contain the growth of entitlement programs as Washington’s biggest failure.

    He’s right that entitlement programs are growing. But why?

    The US population is about 320 million — it’s doubled during my lifetime (54 years).

    Unemployment back in 1959 was about 6% and climbing following Korea. Today we’re nearly 8% down from horrible numbers during the Recession. In the 1960’s, while Vietnam was hot, it went down to 4%. Wars don’t guarantee jobs in our economy anymore. They used to.

    Given how the Labor Department measures unemployment, there are always many more needing a job, able to work, but unable to find employment. Many more and that’s always been true. Whatever rate you see, the fact is unemployment is always worse. Never better.

    I mention this because there’s a relationship between the size of government and the overall health of our economy. Wars used to play a role in that analysis but of late they have not. Now it’s about jobs and no health care, now it’s about getting older and not being able to afford prescriptions. Fewer seniors live with their family like they used to. The world has changed, we in society are different, yet we expect America to behave the same. If we change so does the nation.

    I get a kick out of all this talk about big government or small government. The funniest part is how rarely anybody actually propose an exact size!

    That’s because the government needs to be elastic, it needs to stretch to meet the changing needs of the people it serves. Stretch does mean both ways, by the way. Growth and constriction.

    When folks need more help they can’t get anywhere else, our government needs to expand. When they need less it should shrink. To reject that is to embrace misery and unmet need. This is not a Democratic ideal and it shouldn’t be embraced by Republicans either. Misery sucks, let’s agree at least that much.

    So the fist major job that Republicans and Democrats can do together is help the private sector create jobs. Otherwise, they should plan in advance for government to grow. Because it will. In response to the misery index of the people.

    You can’t say you care about entitlement program spending but refuse to do that planning. Or talk about it at all without a factual base of what those programs involve.

    The biggest of the “entitlement programs” (a.k.a., discretionary spending)is the Military. By far.

    Beyond that, large chucks go to Social Security, Medicare, Unemployment Insurance and Medicaid. That’s the bulk of non-military discretionary spending.

    For each of those, there is a payroll contribution. Translation — these are not gifts.

    Social security is a guaranteed pension program. Medicare and Medicaid are health insurance programs. We pay for those out of our paychecks. Likewise, there’s Unemployment Insurance which, well, is insurance we pay for in case we’re stuck and can’t find work.

    These are not gifts.

    We then have Veteran’s benefits which are a pretty big part of discretionary spending along with other programs, and then there’s the Miltary which eats up the bulk of discretionary spending in the budget. You can call those gifts but I won’t.

    A fraction of those funds go to folks with special needs, the mentally ill, the severely disabled. There is a media swept myth out there that we have many millions of people, paid for by us innocent, hard working taxpayers, who don’t want to work and won’t go looking for a job. “Welfare” we’re told is what they collect.

    You can call those gifts, but I have a conscience and would rather call that upholding the dignity of our nation’s people at home.

    There is no such program as welfare anymore. That ended long ago. In fact the federal government has very severe restrictions on the issuance of any benefit program and there are constant reviews of eligibility.

    We still have people complaining about so many lazy Americans who refuse to work. But when you strip down the entitlement pie chart, you can’t seem to identify what mysterious welfare program they’re on.

    After you take out Social Security and Medicare, Medicaid and Unemployment, Miltary spending and Veteran’s services, there truly is not very much left.

    These are tough times for many Americans who cannot find work. There is a lot of pain in this nation right now, lots of kids who can’t find work out of college, lots of men and women with kids who cannot feel the dignity of bringing home a regular paycheck.

    I will not walk away from them. I will not call them lazy. I’d rather they work and would prefer to serve with others who are much more interested in finding them a job than chastising the victims of this economy for not having one.

    Want to cut them off? Want them so desperate they will break into your house? Is that the America we want? All because we’re not smart enough to see that help as a cost of doing business?

    Capitalism is the best system ever conceived but capitalism rarely works at 100% labor efficiency. Rather it tends to create labor surplus (unemployed). Our economy exports significant amounts of our labor. Technology has taken so many jobs out of the workforce.

    More people living longer. Fewer jobs that pay less.

    Friends, this a recipe for mutually assured disaster.

    For us to get into a better place where the government can shrink, we must GROW the economy. Jobs must replace entitlement subsidy.

    Republicans feel that tax cuts grows the economy. Sorry, but that’s a fairy tale. There’s no track record for that because few tax cuts proposed ever linked specifically to job CREATION. Want to cut taxes through a job creation tax cut? I’m listening.

    Rather, the Republicans insist that if we just cut taxes, the economy will simply grow. We’ve tried that and it does not. Not in the way it has been done in the past.

    What it has done is deprive the nation of funds it needs when we need it most.

    We cut the revenue, offer poor people less than no help, we chastise them and then we complain about the national debt.

    That’s not a good recipe for national success.

    This is why when the people suffer they turn to Democrats. Because our mantra is putting people first.

    Republicans fall into the same mousetrap and over again. I am a Democrat that actually wants to see Republicans succeed because if they do well that’s because the people are doing well. I want the people to do well.

    Ed, you say that the message of your party should be smaller government to generate maximum personal freedoms. I suggest they pay less attention to government. Frankly, if truth be told, they don’t like government much anyhow.

    Rather, they should pay attention to the economy and keep busy there making it grow. Working harder to make sure that every American who needs work can find one to sustain their family. That way, taxation can be responsibly reduced. Entitlements can be reduced. Responsibly.

    We are 320 million people. In ten years, we will be 350 million people and a whole bunch of us will be seniors living well into our 90’s. Medical science will take care of that. We must prepare for that inevitability and I hope we will.

    Moderates solve problems up the center of the political spectrum, with firmness and compassion, where frankly most intelligent answers in government can be found.


  9. City Activist robert walsh says:

    Well its not all doom and gloom. Comm.Chip Larmarca is a good Republican. As some one that is right in the middle I find him refreshing. (PS-Chip-, that Adcock looks like a real prick-Thank God you got me ,cause they are going to play dirty, but I’m going to show you how to play dirtier.)…

  10. West Davie Resident says:

    Dear libs ( or should I say progressive Dems), when the last dollars of the wealthiest taxpayers have been redistributed to the entitlement state and we can no longer borrow money in the world market or can no longer simply print more dollars, will you finally believe we fiscal conservatives that our free market, free spirit, country has been destroyed by your kind? Do you prefer we wait until the government starts taking and liquidating our homes and businesses in an attempt to raise spending money? It has happened worldwide in the recent past and could just as easily happen here. That, unfortunately, is the end game unless your crystsl ball says otherwise. Stop focusing on the party label and you might learn something from we Republicans.

  11. jAMIE cURRAN says:

    Hey Bud, you missed the broward Bulldog article. More to come on my cohorts in crime…

    FROM BUDDY: I’m on the staff of Browardbulldog.org, which means I occasionally write for them.

  12. Alice in Wonderland says:

    Deer Annjello,

    Pleeze chek yor sentence structure beefour you hit scent. Amazing too winded lawiars sword fighting on a blog .
    Spend some time with the wives, take them out to dinner they are tired of carry-out

  13. Commissioner Angelo Castillo says:

    West Davie, everything you say would make perfect sense except for one very important thing.

    The US economy not big enough to employ 320 million people up to our standard of living. Too many cannot participate in this economy yet need sustenance. That fact won’t change without job creation on a large scale.

    Absent a plan to provide jobs to all Americans, absent entitlements to string those along who can’t find work, the unemployed will starve. They will end up slicing your throat to get to your groceries. We see that throughout history wherever your approach has been tried.

    That’s not an end game you should welcome.

    You are focused on the wrong things. And that focus does not solve problems it makes them worse.


  14. Duke says:

    Commissioner Castillo:
    That was extremely well written and one of the best things I have ever read. Well said, sir.

  15. John Henry says:


    Funny that you advocate the need for bigger government after taking a virtually worthless position at BSO. You’re all for big government as long as you are getting paid right???

    People that line their pockets off the back big government (yourself included) IS what’s causing these problems.

  16. john Henry is right! says:

    @John Henry, you are right! Hey Angelo, why is it my hard earned money, which doesn’t pay my bills, mortgage or food much less my kids needs, have to be stolen from me to pay for someone else’s? If I were making as much as you living on the government trough, I’d have no issues with helping someone else, but when I can’t get help to survive and someone else can using my money, I despise that!

  17. West Davie Resident says:

    Commisar Angelo, given your belief our economy is not big enough to create jobs for all working age citizens, I guess you are against giving citizenship to adult illegal aliens? Also your original comment that entitlement spending has increased because of a growing population misses the whole point. It is the percent of our citizenry getting benefits other Social Security that is shocking and concerning. We are at the breaking point. Also you said getting other entitlement benefits is hard? Let’s see – disability and Obama phones come to mind. But it is hard to get patronage jobs at the BSO.

  18. Duke says:

    When those who bitch about welfare queens in the Bronx are equally disturbed about the welfare kings in Beverly Hills, their argument might have some weight.
    Me personally, I’m not worried about the single mom in the Bronx with her $200 dollar a month food stamps. Far more disturbing is the Welfare King military contractor in Beverly Hills who routinely destroy billions of dollars worth of fighter jets that were never needed to begin with, but we can’t sell them to foreign nations because we don’t want them having the same technology that we considered outdated.

  19. Commissioner Angelo Castillo says:

    West Davie,

    You ask an intelligent question but before I respond, I have a question for you and I ask it respectfully and in all seriousness.

    Are you asking the question honestly? With the goal of having an adult exchange of ideas — like this website used to host? If so, I will respond.

    Or are you one of those quick to hurl insults which, in so doing defines the speaker never the target, and are really not interested in a serious exchange? In which case I’d rather pass.

    Not prejudging in any way, just asking you to say which.

    There are blogs of all kinds I suppose. I do wish some civility would come back to this one. Which explains why so few elected folks even bother coming here anymore.

    We have things to say and folks to exchange thoughts with. But that can’t be done on the plane of talk that we so often see here. It’s just undignified.



  20. Commissioner Angelo Castillo says:

    And here’s a perfect example. John Henry, who doesn’t use his actual name, is quick to take pot shots at others. Perhaps he’s entitled to that though he could show more class.

    But he misses the point.

    Henry says I advocate the need for bigger government, but actually here’s a cut and past of what I said. Which is totally opposite.

    “I get a kick out of all this talk about big government or small government. The funniest part is how rarely anybody actually propose an exact size!

    That’s because the government needs to be elastic, it needs to stretch to meet the changing needs of the people it serves. Stretch does mean both ways, by the way. Growth and constriction.”

    This is more important than just showing that Henry is wrong, which he is, or that he lacks a bit of class which he does. It’s about the kind of people we’ve become.

    How about some bringing some class back into America’s act? Which happens one person at a time.

    Being conservative has never been an excuse to be harsh or mean to others. And being liberal has never meant having no accountability or sense of personal responsibility. Rather, those extremes exist for one reason only.

    To help discussions go up the middle of the political spectrum the way most people prefer their government to do things.

    Why don’t you chill out Henry, adults are trying to speak here.


  21. West Davie Resident says:

    My question was asked straight foward and honestly Angelo. You cant talk about too few jobs in this Obama economy and also advocate adding 11,000,000 new citizens who ultimately need jobs too. And you cant seriously think liberals would ever agree to any reduction of services. They already complain about reductions in the automatic annual 8% growth in the federal budget as draconian cuts. Get real.

  22. Commissioner Angelo Castillo says:


    OK, and I do appreciate your more respectful tone thank you. I will uphold the same.

    You mention immigration as if I hadn’t offered you enough subject matter in my remarks. Most of the people you’re talking about already have jobs. Jobs few Americans would do, either at all or for very long. Nearly none, a percentage probably less than 1%, qualifies for any form of entitlement help since they are not citizens.

    Yes, we do treat them in our hospitals because we’d be scum not to. Very few end up in jails. If they wanted to be miserable AND totally poor, they’d just go home. Immigrants come here to work not on vacation.

    Who hires them? Who recruits them? Companies do that, companies who are notorious at treating them badly and employing them off the books which is a crime that routinely goes unprosecuted.

    Mind you — the “illegal” alien is everybody’s scourge. But the illegal boss is an afterthought if at all.

    Why is that by the way?

    You then raise a budget balance argument. Look, I’ll make this plain. Long term borrowing to pay for short term debt is financial malpractice. A combination of cost cuts and revenue increases makes much more sense for the nation.

    But when the house is on fire, that’s not a good time to worry about fixing the electrical system. There is a time and a place, there is a logical sequencing to things. I hope we get there but not at the expense of bringing misery onto our streets because West — trust me on this — you don’t want to see that side of America.

    It’s sooo much smarter to just pay your taxes and consider where we’re at a cost of doing business. In fact, there may be no more conservative thing we can do. The only thing holding this nation together right now is the entitlement programs you seem to hate so much. Take those away and we will have rioting in the streets.

    Smarter yet, let’s expand the economy and create jobs for everyone we can. So much smarter because then they also pay taxes which means each of us needs to pay less.


  23. Real Deal says:

    It is true that the economy does not provide enough jobs to keep almost all workers employed. It should and it can. Salaries for the jobs that do exist have not kept up with the quality of life increases. So there is a pattern of fewer jobs, lower salaries, higher costs of living. The place we are at right now is not a good situation.

    I like the approach that government work toward shaping the economy to better meet the needs of our people. I also support having a safety net of protections for those who truly need it.

  24. Dean Ledbetter says:

    An Original Poem by Dean Ledbetter

    The Terror of Osamacare

    T’was a few days after Christmas
    The time was almost here,
    The institution of OSAMACARE
    The realization of FEAR

    Medical Insurance is canceled
    Physicians filled with dread,
    Doctors and places verboten
    Patients almost dead

    T’was to be salvation
    To those uninsured,
    Turned out to be damnation
    To those already secured

    The BIG LIE came with a PERIOD.
    To convince and cajole,
    The consequences myriad
    For believers young and old

    “So, what,” says OBAMA
    If a few patricians will die,
    We are saving the masses,”
    to which came reply,

    “Feel secure in your position,” Barack.
    The dead cannot speak a note.”
    Posterity beckons, legacy remains,
    For neither can they vote.