Speed Reads


Meet the conservative Miami billionaire who loves Marco Rubio and loathes Jeb Bush

In the words of Politico, 82-year-old Norman Braman is "Marco Rubio's secret weapon." He's a conservative billionaire with "a fondness for the Florida senator — and an intense distaste for Jeb Bush." And he's a man who "is poised to occupy the sugar-daddy role for Rubio that, in 2012, Sheldon Adelson played for Newt Gingrich and Foster Friess played for Rick Santorum: the mega-contributor who kept their candidacies afloat even after other donors had written them off."

Braman, who used to own the Philadelphia Eagles, is considering spending $10 million to $25 million on Rubio's campaign — and maybe more, Politico reports. "The investment is as much a reflection of Braman's regard for Rubio as it is for his distaste for the GOP's other Florida-based presidential hopeful," Politico says. Braman's grudge against former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush goes back more than a decade, to Bush's 2004 veto of $2 million in government funding for a breast cancer center Braman had built. (The breast cancer center wasn't targeted specifically — it was part of a much bigger effort by Bush to cut state spending.)

If Braman does back Rubio, and still holds a grudge against Bush, it could be a real problem for the former Florida governor. Because Braman, as Politico says, "is the worst kind of political enemy: He's highly motivated, civic-minded, and in possession of unlimited resources."

Read more about Braman at Politico.