Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Sorry, Wrong Number

From the Miami Herald:

TALLAHASSEE – There’s a new phone service provider in Florida offering deeply discounted calling: the state Republican Party.

On Tuesday, the party began marketing local, long distance and high-speed Internet service to registered Republicans throughout the state. The twist: Five percent of every bill goes to the party.

The unusual fundraising gimmick has the approval of the Federal Elections Commission and appears to be the first of its kind in the nation.

It also means Florida’s GOP, which helped usher in the largest phone rate increase in state history, is increasing the competition to the local phone companies that benefited most from it — BellSouth, Verizon and Sprint.

The so-called affinity program operates much like the bank credit cards that give a share of their profits to environmental groups, universities and other causes, only this time the money will be directed to a political party.

Well, I knew the Florida GOP had some serious hang-ups (pun intended), but fundraising didn’t seem to one of them.