Port St. Lucie senior arcade owner to challenge Sen. Joe Negronby Dara Kam | May 14th, 2013
From The News Service of Florida:
Brandon Cannon, who closed his senior arcade in Port St. Lucie last month after the state outlawed select electronic games, has opened a campaign account to challenge a potential future Senate president. Cannon, 26, said Tuesday he is undeterred that Sen. Joe Negron, R-Stuart, could be in line to become Senate president for the 2017 and 2018 sessions or that Negron has already amassed more than $104,000 for the 2014 election.
“We cried out to our local legislators in St. Lucie County, Okeechobee County, and further south, and we had a little support but nothing from our local representatives and Sen. Negron,” said Cannon, a Greenville, S.C., native who has lived in Port St. Lucie for most of the past decade. Cannon, a Republican who said he voted in 2012 for Negron’s re-election, was part of a group from Port St. Lucie that traveled to Tallahassee to make pleas before the Senate Rules Committee against the proposed gaming crackdown (HB 155). He said the seniors who accompanied him on the trip to Tallahassee were unable to hold one-on-one meetings with Negron.
The new law requires machines to be coin-operated and prohibits gift cards to be handed out as prizes. The law was shepherded quickly through the Legislature after a multi-state and federal investigation led to raids in March at Internet cafes across Florida and the arrests of 57 people. The investigation resulted in an abrupt resignation on March 12 of former Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll, who in the past did consulting work for Allied Veterans of the World, a charity at the center of the investigation. Two Broward County arcades — Boardwalk Brothers Inc. and Play It Again Florida — have filed a lawsuit challenging the law, calling the gaming ban discriminatory. Cannon said he is not involved in the lawsuit.