NEWS: Stephanie Murphy Releases New Ad Highlighting Mica’s Enthusiastic Support for Trump — “I Love Trump” — and His Harmful Policies

Murphy: “I call on Congressman Mica to do the right thing and denounce and disavow Donald Trump once and for all.”

ORLANDO – Former national security specialist and candidate for Congress Stephanie Murphy released her second television ad of the cycle highlighting Republican Congressman John Mica’s consistent and enthusiastic support of Donald Trump, including Mica saying, “I love Trump.” The ad also highlights Trump and Mica’s shared harmful policies of restricting access to women’s health care and opposing commonsense efforts to reduce gun violence. The ad ends with Murphy calling for a new approach, saying, “to change Washington, we need to change the people we send there.”

Click here to view the new television ad.

Stephanie Murphy is running for Congress in Florida’s Seventh Congressional District, which includes all of Seminole County and much of northern Orange County, including parts of downtown Orlando.

Statement from Stephanie Murphy:

“Congressman John Mica has long been a consistent and enthusiastic supporter of Donald Trump, going so far as to say, ‘I love Trump.’ What’s more concerning is that Trump and Mica share the same harmful policies of dismantling women’s rights and opposing commonsense laws to reduce gun violence. Spending nearly 30 years in Washington has changed John Mica, and he’s become out of touch with the values of women and families in central Florida. I call on Congressman Mica to do the right thing and denounce and disavow Donald Trump once and for all.

“It’s time for strong moral leadership in Congress that treats everyone equally and with dignity – and with a new approach that puts the security and prosperity of Floridians over partisan politics.”

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NEWS: Stephanie Murphy Denounces Trump’s ‘Disgusting and Insulting’ Remarks Caught on Audio

ORLANDO – Following a bombshell release of an audio tape where Donald Trump is overheard making lewd comments about women, former national security specialist and candidate for Congress Stephanie Murphy called Trump’s remarks “disgusting and insulting” and criticized Congressman John Mica for continuing to support Donald Trump for president.

Statement from Stephanie Murphy:

“Donald Trump’s disgusting and insulting comments are absolutely indefensible, and I denounce them in the strongest possible terms. Every woman should be personally offended by this type of behavior. We cannot allow this man to demean and harass women without recognizing the dangerous example it sets for our children and our society.

“Congressman John Mica has yet to denounce any of Donald Trump’s attacks on women throughout this campaign and he continues to support Donald Trump’s agenda to dismantle women’s rights. Either Congressman Mica is putting partisanship over principles or these are John Mica’s principles – either way, it’s wrong.”

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MEMO: Stephanie Murphy Enters Home Stretch of Campaign with Strong Momentum

TO: Interested Parties
FROM: Brad Howard, Campaign Manager, Stephanie Murphy for Congress
DATE: Monday, Oct. 3, 2016
SUBJECT: FL-07 State of the Race

Stephanie Murphy Enters Home Stretch of Campaign with Strong Momentum

Experts Across the Country Agree Mica Facing Toughest Challenge of His Decades-Long Career in Washington

OVERVIEW

Former national security specialist Stephanie Murphy has put together a strong, well-organized campaign to unseat longtime incumbent Republican Congressman John Mica in Florida’s Seventh Congressional District.

Over the last three months, Murphy has increased her name ID throughout the district and brought the race to a “virtual tie” according to a recent poll. She has barnstormed the district introducing herself to voters, fired up her Democratic base, and held Mica accountable for his far-right, partisan voting record that is out of touch with his new congressional district.

Political experts across the country have taken notice, universally moving their expert predictions toward a Murphy win in November. As the campaign heads into its final 30 days, the momentum is clearly on Stephanie Murphy’s side.

POLITICAL ENVIRONMENT

Murphy’s overall message of change, security and equality is resonating with voters in this young, diverse and vibrant area of Florida. Florida’s Seventh Congressional District is now one of the youngest and most diverse districts in the state, comprising key voting blocs that are particularly turned off by not only Donald Trump’s toxic candidacy, but also John Mica’s out of touch positions.

The diverse, growing makeup of the district continues to be problematic for John Mica. Latinos make up 18.2 percent of the voting age population and African Americans make up 9.4 percent. Party registration is split evenly between Democrats and Republicans, and Barack Obama carried the district with 50 percent in 2012 and 52 percent in 2008.

In an extremely competitive district with diversifying demographics that also includes the University of Central Florida – the nation’s second largest university – Murphy is well-positioned with voters who are rejecting Trump’s divisive, reckless politics.

In addition to a favorable national environment for Democrats, the recent Pulse tragedy in Orlando has put into stark relief just how out of touch John Mica is. As the greater Orlando community has come together with one voice to call for change, he has continued to oppose common sense gun violence prevention measures and maintained his anti-LGBT record. His refusal to join together with this movement has caught the attention of national groups including the brand new Pride Fund to End Gun Violence, which made Stephanie Murphy its first-ever endorsement and which has been running digital ads holding Mica accountable for his record.

POLLING

“The poll shows Mica leading Murphy 48 percent to 45 percent. That basically puts Murphy in a virtual tie with the long term congressman, when the poll’s 4.9 percent margin of error is taken into account.” – Orlando Sentinel [9/21/2016]

Global Strategy Group and Lester & Associates conducted a district-wide survey of 401 likely November 2016 voters in Florida’s 7th Congressional District between September 13-15, 2016.

Key findings include: are

  • Murphy’s surging support has sent the race into a statistical tie, with Murphy down by only 3 points (45% Murphy/48% Mica) compared to her 18-point deficit in August when she was totally unknown (36% Murphy/54% Mica).
  • Murphy has much more room to grow. Stephanie Murphy’s familiarity and favorability increased with every single demographic group. However, she is still known by just about a third of the electorate (34%) while the long-tenured Mica is known to about twice as many voters (64%). The fact that Murphy is in a statistical tie despite this 30-point name ID gap is very good news.
  • Mica is weighted down by the national mood. In Florida’s 7th District, Hillary Clinton leads Trump by 6 points in a head-to-head matchup (47% Clinton/41% Trump).

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

Over the last few weeks, nonpartisan race watchers and political observers have taken note of the momentum behind Stephanie Murphy’s campaign and Mica’s new vulnerability:

  • The Cook Political Report: Lean GOP to Toss-Up

“Set against a backdrop of redistricting, national tragedy, demographic change and hotly contested presidential race, FL-07 is exactly the type of district that could make the difference between Democrats picking up a modest (5-10) or larger (10-20) number of House seats on Election Night. It also happens to feature the most jarring contrast between an incumbent and a challenger in the country. This race moves to the Toss Up column.” [9/29/2016]

  • Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report: GOP Favored to Toss-Up/TiltGOP

“Democrats are bullish on Stephanie Murphy’s chances against long-time GOP Rep. John Mica. It’s a young (for Florida) and diverse district that Clinton looks poised to win, and the congressman hasn’t had a serious general election test in years… Move from Republican Favored to Toss-Up/Tilt Republican.” [9/30/2016]

  • Frank Bruni, The New York Times

“…Prominent among the issues that Murphy, 37, is campaigning on is her 73-year-old opponent’s dismal record on L.G.B.T. rights. And some Democrats are convinced that this could work powerfully in her favor, especially at this time, in this place. Her district includes much of Orlando, though not Pulse itself, and is home to victims’ relatives and friends. Murphy was at Pulse on this day to show it to United States Representative Barbara Lee, a California Democrat who belongs to a quickly swelling army of party leaders who have traveled to Florida to stump for Murphy or help her raise money, reflecting the party’s identification of her contest as one that might flip a House seat from red to blue and help to erode the Republican majority.” [9/03/2016] 

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NEWS: Stephanie Murphy Campaign Calls Mica Comments ‘Demeaning’ and ‘Out of Touch’

Says Rhetoric, Votes and Support of Trump are Troubling for Florida Women

ORLANDO – The Stephanie Murphy for Congress campaign today called comments by U.S. Congressman John Mica directed at Stephanie Murphy “demeaning” and “out of touch.” In an interview with the Orlando Sentinel, Mica dismissed Murphy’s experience as a mom, educator, businesswoman and former national security specialist for the U.S. Secretary of Defense as not having “much of a background in the community or in the professional world.”

Statement from Sara Jensen, spokesperson for Stephanie Murphy for Congress:

“For Congressman Mica to dismiss Stephanie Murphy’s experience as a mother, educator, businesswoman, and former national security specialist for the U.S. Secretary of Defense as not having ‘much of a background in the community or in the professional world’ is demeaning and shows just out how out-of-touch he has become. This is the type of discrimination and double standard women face every day in the workplace and exactly why we need Stephanie fighting for women in Congress.

“But, it’s not just Congressman Mica’s rhetoric that is troubling, it’s also his voting record. He has voted against equal pay, voted against family and medical leave, twice voted against the Violence Against Women Act, and has supported a constitutional amendment to deny women their constitutional right to make their own health care decisions. Mica also unequivocally supports Donald Trump for president and consistently refuses to call out Donald Trump for his offensive comments about women. We need a change, and we need someone like Stephanie who will stand up and fight for women in Congress.”

BACKGROUND:

Mica said Stephanie had didn’t have much “background in the community or in the professional world.” “She [Murphy] was put up as a strong candidate, but she doesn’t have much of a background in the community or in the professional world,” Mica said. [Orlando Sentinel, 9/30/2016]

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NEWS: Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Retired NASA Astronaut Captain Mark Kelly, and Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC Endorse Stephanie Murphy for Congress

ORLANDO – Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC (ARS PAC) – the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and retired NASA astronaut Captain Mark Kelly – has endorsed businesswoman and former national security specialist Stephanie Murphy for Congress in Florida’s Seventh Congressional District.

Citing her support for a broad set of responsible gun violence prevention policies that help keep guns out of the wrong hands and protect the rights of law-abiding Americans, ARS PAC declared Murphy a “Champion for the Vocal Majority.”

“We are proud to support Stephanie Murphy, a leader who is committed standing up to the Washington gun lobby in Congress and standing up for bipartisan change that will help prevent gun tragedies,” said Congresswoman Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly. “Stephanie knows that with rights comes responsibility, and that we can do more to keep guns out of the wrong hands while protecting the rights of law-abiding Americans. In Congress, Stephanie will be a champion for the vocal majority of Floridians who are calling on their leaders to do more to reduce gun violence and make our communities safer.”

Giffords will also join Murphy and a number of community leaders, gun violence survivors, and local advocates on Tuesday, Sept. 27 to launch Americans for Responsible Solutions’ 2016 Vocal Majority Tour. The tour will be a 13-state, 40-day national tour to encourage the Vocal Majority of Americans who support commonsense change that saves lives from gun violence to stand up and speak out this November.

2016 Vocal Majority Tour Kickoff
Tuesday, September 27 at 11:00 a.m.
Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts
445 S. Magnolia Avenue
Orlando, FL 32801
Please click here to RSVP to attend

“I am so incredibly honored to accept this endorsement from Congresswoman Giffords, Captain Kelly and ARS PAC and to welcome them to Orlando on Tuesday,” said Murphy. “No community should ever go through what happened in Tucson or what we went through here in Orlando. It’s time to get serious about gun violence, but for too long Congress has listened to the gun lobby instead of using common sense. We should protect the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding gun owners, but we should also protect our communities by passing commonsense gun laws, such as preventing suspected terrorists from buying guns and requiring comprehensive background checks on all gun sales.”

Murphy criticized her opponent, Congressman John Mica, for his abysmal record on gun laws and for failing to act in the wake of the worst mass shooting in American history. In fact, news reports have revealed that Mica accepted a $1,000 contribution from the gun lobby just two days after the Pulse shooting.

“I continue to be dismayed and outraged that Congressman John Mica accepted a campaign contribution from the gun lobby only two days after the Pulse Nightclub massacre,” said Murphy. “This offensive contribution is exactly what is wrong with Washington – and explains why Congressman Mica continues to oppose and vote against commonsense, bipartisan gun laws despite representing an area that is home to the largest mass shooting in American history.”

BACKGROUND:
Mica accepted a $1,000 check from the National Rifle Association two days after the Pulse Nightclub massacre in Orlando. [Florida Politics, 8/22/16]

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NEWS: Members of SEIU Florida Endorse Stephanie Murphy for Congress

Service Employees Say Stephanie Murphy Will Fight for Workers, Raise Wages

ORLANDO – Members of SEIU Florida today endorsed former national security specialist Stephanie Murphy for Congress in Florida’s Seventh Congressional District. SEIU Florida represents over 55,000 active and retired healthcare professionals, public employees, and property service workers in the state of Florida. With over 2.1 million members, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in North America.

Service employees said Stephanie will fight for working families and lead the effort to raise wages in central Florida.

“Our members are endorsing Stephanie Murphy because she will fight for working families in Florida and will be a bipartisan bridge builder in Congress,” said Monica Russo, President of SEIU Florida. “Stephanie’s immigrant parents worked multiple hard-labor jobs here in America – including cleaning office buildings at night – so that her brother and her could be the first in their family to graduate college. She understands the struggles of everyday working families, which is why she will fight for higher wages, safer workplaces, paid family leave, and better access to childcare.”

Murphy said she was honored by the endorsement – particularly since her own parents worked several low-wage jobs and long hours just to make ends meet when she was growing up. She called for bipartisan efforts to pass legislation to help families in central Florida.

“As someone who grew up watching her parents scrub office floors and bathroom toilets at night to make ends meet, I am proud and honored to receive SEIU Florida’s endorsement,” said Murphy. “I’m running because I believe the American dream is alive and well, but it’s slipping out of reach for too many families. Hard work isn’t enough anymore, and Washington isn’t helping – in fact, they’re making it worse. We need to raise wages, invest more in education and career training, ensure equal pay for equal work, fight for safer workplaces and more secure retirements, and pass paid family and medical leave. We can only do this by reaching across the aisle and bringing Democrats and Republicans together to stop the bickering and start delivering results.”

Murphy also criticized her opponent for failing to stand up for working families in central Florida.

“While Congressman Mica has voted against raising the minimum wage nearly every time over his 24 years in Congress, he’s voted to allow himself a payraise eight times. This is just the tip of the iceberg of Mica’s anti-worker votes and a prime example of what’s wrong with Washington. If we want to change Washington, we’ve got to change the people we send to Washington,” said Murphy.

Murphy is running for Congress in Florida’s Seventh Congressional District, which includes all of Seminole County and northern Orange County, including Winter Park and much of downtown Orlando.

BACKGROUND:

Congressman Mica Voted 8 Times To Raise His Own Pay. [HR 2775, Vote #550, 10/16/13; HR 8, Vote #659, 1/01/13;  HR 3630, Vote #922, 12/13/11; HR 3082, Vote #662, 12/21/10; HR 1105, Vote #86, 2/25/09 ; H J Res 20, Vote #72, 1/31/07; HR 4328, Vote #538, 10/20/98 ; HR 4539, Vote #247, 7/15/94]

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NEWS: Stephanie Murphy Launches First Television Ad Focusing on Her Work as a National Security Specialist

Murphy: “We can fix what’s wrong with Washington, with what’s right about America.”

ORLANDO – Former national security specialist and Democratic nominee for Congress Stephanie Murphy today launched her first television ad of the 2016 campaign. The 30-second television ad shares Murphy’s compelling biographical story and ends with a call to fix Washington.

The ad may be viewed on Stephanie Murphy’s Facebook page by clicking here. Murphy is running in Florida’s Seventh Congressional District, which represents all of Seminole County and northern Orange County, including Winter Park, the entire UCF campus, and much of downtown Orlando.

Statement from Stephanie Murphy:

“My parents instilled in me the values of hard work, opportunity, and personal responsibility.  With their determination and the support of our community, we had the opportunity to succeed.  But for too many in the middle class, it is getting harder and harder to have that fair shot at the American Dream.  It’s why I’m running for Congress. I absolutely believe we can fix what’s wrong with Washington, with what’s right about America.

“If we’re going to change Washington, we’ve got to change the people we send to Washington. I’m fed up with politicians putting politics ahead of solutions, and it’s time for a change. Central Florida families deserve a representative who will put people first, not politics. By working together, we can make our communities safer, our families stronger, and our future brighter.”

Transcript of television ad:

NARRATOR:

It’s an American story. Her family fled communist Vietnam by boat – when Stephanie Murphy was only a baby – rescued by the U.S. Navy.

She worked hard and after 9/11, Murphy became a national security specialist at the Department of Defense; planned counterterrorism and disaster relief efforts; and, was recognized for her commonsense problem solving.

STEPHANIE MURPHY:

I’m Stephanie Murphy, and I approved this message because we can fix what’s wrong with Washington with what’s right about America.

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NEWS: 200 Days Since the President’s Zika Funding Request, Florida Voters Demand Action from Mica on Zika Emergency

Mica has voted eight times to block up-or-down vote on President’s Zika funding request 

MAITLAND – To mark 200 days since the President first requested funding for the Zika emergency to help states like Florida, a group of Florida women today hand delivered 200 fact sheets on the Zika virus to U.S. Congressman John Mica’s congressional office in Maitland – fact sheets that outline Mica’s obstruction to critical Zika funding and calling for him to give the President’s request an up-or-down vote in Congress.

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Former national security specialist and Democratic nominee for Congress Stephanie Murphy said the partisan gridlock on Zika funding is another clear example of what’s wrong with Washington.

Statement from Stephanie Murphy:

“During my time at the Department of Defense, I helped coordinate efforts to address the bird flu outbreak in Asia that potentially threatened the United States, and I can tell you firsthand that it is both irresponsible and downright dangerous to play politics with viruses like Zika. Once again, I call on Congressman Mica to stop pointing fingers and to start leading on this issue.

“Expectant mothers and women are most at risk with the Zika virus, and I’m appalled at Republican attempts to strip away funding and resources that would help women in Florida deal with this health crisis. These partisan battles and gridlock are just more examples of what is wrong with Washington.

“Congressman Mica continues to join his obstructionist allies in playing politics instead of holding an up-or-down vote on the President’s request for emergency resources, and in the meantime, the Zika crisis continues to impact more and more Florida families. Florida women and families deserve better.”

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NEWS: Mica Comes Back from 7-Week Recess, Votes 8th Time to Block Zika Funding Bill

ORLANDO – Former national security specialist and Democratic nominee for Congress Stephanie Murphy today criticized Republican Congressman John Mica for voting to block additional funding for the Zika virus immediately after returning to D.C. following a seven-week recess.

Statement from Stephanie Murphy:

“Given that Congressman Mica happily joined the Republican-led House in taking the longest recess in decades without ensuring funding to fight the Zika emergency, it is extremely disappointing, but not surprising, that he came back to D.C. and voted for the eighth time to block a bill that provides the resources needed for Zika response.

“Congressman Mica continues to join his obstructionist allies in playing politics instead of holding an up-or-down vote on the President’s request for emergency resources, and in the meantime, the Zika crisis continues to impact more and more Florida families. Florida women and families deserve better.”

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Stephanie Murphy is an educator, executive, and former national security specialist who is the Democratic nominee for U.S. Congress in Florida’s Seventh Congressional District. Stephanie currently works as an executive at Sungate Capital where she is responsible for leading investment efforts and implementing government affairs initiatives. She is also an instructor of business and social entrepreneurship at Rollins College. Previously, Stephanie served as a national security specialist in the Office of the Secretary of Defense where she received numerous awards for her distinguished service, including the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Civilian Service. Stephanie lives in Winter Park with her husband and two children, Liem and Maya ages, five and two.

NEWS: Pride Fund Makes Inaugural Endorsement

Newly-launched PAC endorses supporter of LGBTQ rights and common sense gun reform legislation in Orlando-area Congressional race

ORLANDO – Pride Fund to End Gun Violence PAC announces its first candidate endorsement since its formation in the wake of the Orlando Pulse nightclub mass shooting. Pride Fund endorses Democratic candidate Stephanie Murphy in Florida’s 7th Congressional District race. Murphy is challenging incumbent Republican John Mica, who holds an “A+” rating from the National Rifle Association.

“No community should ever go through what we experienced here in Orlando, and we must do everything in our power to prevent these types of massacres from happening again,” said Murphy. “I’m proud to accept the endorsement of Pride Fund and to work together as we strengthen LGBTQ rights and pass long-overdue common sense gun security legislation. It’s time to hold a dysfunctional and irresponsible Congress accountable on both these issues because America’s promise is more than life and liberty, it’s also the pursuit of happiness.”

Pride Fund announces its first candidate endorsement in a congressional district with dozens of families directly affected by the June 12 mass shooting of 102 victims, 49 of whom were killed.

“We are here to challenge the status quo,” said Jason Lindsay, an Iraq War veteran who is Founder and Executive Director of Pride Fund. “We are giving the LGBTQ community and our allies a voice in the fight against gun violence, and we’re starting with this election cycle. Pride Fund supports Stephanie Murphy in the District 7 race because she is prepared to support common sense gun reform legislation, from restricting sales of assault weapons to preventing suspected terrorists from purchasing firearms.”

Stephanie Murphy is challenging 12-term congressman John Mica, a vocal supporter of Donald Trump’s candidacy and the RNC’s 2016 platform, the most anti-LGBTQ platform in modern history. He also has a consistent record of pro-gun lobby votes, including voting to repeal the assault weapons ban and preventing the expansion of background checks.

Murphy is a former Department of Defense analyst. A business executive, she teaches business and social entrepreneurship at Rollins College. She lives with her husband and two children in Winter Park, Florida.