Wednesday, April 12, 2017


President TRUMP has nominated CARLOS GENARO MUNIZ to be the top legal officer for the United States Department of Education. MUNIZ was former Deputy General Counsel to Florida Governor JOHN EDWARD BUSH a/k/a "JEB" BUSH and former Chief of Staff, Deputy Attorney General and transition team director to controversial Florida Attorney General PAMELA JO BONDI. MUNIZ would not respond to AP questions. That flunks the laugh test about his nomination. Wonder why?

BONDI solicited from TRUMP a $25,000 campaign contribution before dropping any fraud investigation of TRUMP UNIVERSITY, for which a TRUMP-paid $25,000,000 payment was recently approved by a federal judge in settlement of fraud cases brought by students.

A wire service story in The St. Augustine Record on April 12, 2017 did not list CARLOS GENARO MUNIZ's law firm affiliation, stating only that "Muniz became a partner at the Jacksonville, Florida, office of a large law and lobbying firm." In fact, MUNIZ is Tallahassee-based but lists a 904 (Northeast Florida) telephone number on his firm website.

The name of MUNIZ;s law firm is McGUIREWOODS f/k/a "McGUIREWOODS BATTLE amp; BOOTH," a multinational corporate law firm with 23 offices in the United States and Europe, employing more than 1000 lawyers. McGUIREWOODS website reports that he is "senior vice president in the National & Multistate Strategies group of McGuireWoods Consulting LLC and a partner with McGuireWoods LLP. He provides senior level insight and advocacy for clients in their interaction with state attorneys general throughout the country and with the executive and legislative branches of Florida state government."

Yes. CARLOS GENARO MUNIZ is a lobbyist. But he is not registered as either a lobbyist with the State of Florida. AP did not report that.

CARLOS GENARO MUNIZ (Florida Bar No. Bar 535001) formerly represented the State of Florida in defense of alleged coverups at Florida State University of alleged rape allegations in Title IX cases prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Education and was lead defense lawyer for alleged rapist and Heisman Trophy winner JAMEIS WINSTON.

Conflict of interest?

Do gators fill the swamp?

Do corporate cognitive miser-lobbyists get to determine U.S. Education policy and Education Civil Rights priorities?

As Jim Garrison, New Orleans DA once asked, "What do you expect from a pig but a grunt?"

Time to drive the money-changers from the temple of democracy, starting with the prospective General Counsel of the U.S. Department of Education?

What do you reckon?

Full disclosure: the writer (Ed Slavin) has since 2014 had a civil rights complaint pending before the U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights against the University of Florida Levin College of Law for age and disability discrimination and retaliation in admissions to the Environmental and Land Use Planning Law (ELUPL) program, which turned me down five times (three of the five rejection letters misspelled the word "land" as "lane."

This is the Associated Press article in quo, the first rough draft of history, which was ineptly edited when it appeared in some in Florida newspapers:

Trump Taps Lawyer Involved With Trump U Case for Federal Job
By Michael Biesecker & Gary Fineout
APRIL 11, 2017, 4:04 P.M. E.D.T.

WASHINGTON — As a top aide to Florida's attorney general, Carlos G. Muniz helped defend the office's decision to sit out legal action against Trump University. Now the president is naming him to be the top lawyer in the U.S. Education Department.

President Donald Trump has announced his intent to nominate Muniz to serve as general counsel to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. The Senate would then consider the nomination of the Republican lawyer.

Emails reviewed by The Associated Press show that in 2013 Muniz, who served as Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi's chief of staff for three years, was included in discussions about student complaints alleging fraud with Trump's namesake real-estate seminars.

Muniz, now in private practice, has also been the lead attorney defending Florida State University in a lawsuit by a former student who said the school failed to investigate after she said she was sexually assaulted by the star quarterback of the Seminoles' 2013 national championship football team. The player was never charged with a crime by police in Tallahassee, and the state attorney's office declined to pursue a criminal case against him.

An investigation by the Education Department's Office of Civil Rights is still underway, presenting a potential conflict of interest if Muniz is confirmed.

Both Muniz and the White House declined to comment Tuesday, referring all questions to the Education Department.

The Education Department said in a statement to The Associated Press late Tuesday that its ethics officer will work with Muniz on identifying any potential conflict of interest "so that Mr. Muniz may recuse himself as appropriate if confirmed."

"This effort will include a review of Mr. Muniz's representation of Florida State University in any Title IX complaint or investigation," the statement said.

The department declined to answer questions about Muniz's role in the review of Trump U.

AP reported last year that Bondi personally solicited a $25,000 political contribution from Trump as her office was weighing how to respond to questions from the Orlando Sentinel newspaper about whether she would join New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman in suing the billionaire businessman.

Though both Trump University and the Florida-based Trump Institute had stopped offering classes by the time Bondi took office in 2011, more than 20 consumer complaints had been filed by former students who said they were swindled.

Emails from August 2013 obtained under Florida's public records law showed that Muniz was copied on discussions about how to respond to the newspaper's request for comment, though he did not actively weigh in.

Emails show Muniz did help direct Bondi's public defense on the issue, including rewriting an October 2013 fact sheet distributed to reporters.

Days after Bondi's office said it was reviewing the Trump U case, a political committee supporting her re-election received a $25,000 check from Trump's charitable foundation. His daughter, Ivanka Trump, also added $500 more to support Bondi.

Bondi, who endorsed Trump's bid for president right before the Florida Republican primary, said she was unaware her staff had been asked about the New York lawsuit until a Florida newspaper columnist highlighted the 2013 donation from Trump.

Bondi has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and defended her decision to accept the contribution, saying her office never seriously considered suing Trump.

Trump's 2013 check, drawn on an account in the name of the Donald J. Trump Foundation, violated a federal prohibition against charities giving money to political groups. The issue garnered national media coverage last year during Trump's presidential campaign, and his foundation paid a $2,500 fine to the IRS.

The illegal donation prompted a Massachusetts attorney last year to file a state bribery complaint against Bondi and Trump. A Florida prosecutor assigned to review the case informed Republican Gov. Rick Scott last week of his office's conclusion that there was not enough evidence to move forward.

A memo about the complaint against Bondi said it was "insufficient on its face to conduct a criminal investigation" and was based almost entirely on media coverage. The assistant state attorney who wrote the memo said the complaint was based on insinuation and there was no evidence Bondi asked for the money in exchange for any official act. There was no indication she interviewed Trump or Bondi before reaching her decision.

Though Bondi's office took no action against Trump, the president later agreed to settle the class-action case filed by New York and private lawyers, paying his former students $25 million in damages.

After leaving Bondi's office, Muniz became a partner at the Jacksonville, Florida, office of a large law and lobbying firm. He defended Florida State University in a Title IX lawsuit filed by Erica Kinsman, a former student who said she was raped by quarterback Jameis Winston in 2012.

Kinsman sued Winston in April 2015 in federal civil court, alleging sexual battery and assault, and Winston countersued her one month later, alleging her accusations were false and defamatory. Both civil cases were settled in December under confidential terms. Winston, the No. 1 pick in the 2015 NFL draft, now plays for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Title IX is a federal law that bans discrimination at schools that receive federal funding. The Education Department warned schools in 2011 of their legal responsibilities to immediately investigate allegations of sexual assault, even if a criminal investigation has not been concluded.

Last year, FSU agreed to pay Kinsman $950,000, the largest settlement ever for claims regarding a university's indifference to a student's reported sexual assault.


Fineout reported from Tallahassee, Florida. Associated Press writers Jill Colvin and Maria Danilova contributed to this story.


This is from the White House website:

The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate Carlos G. Muñiz to the Department of Education

President Donald J. Trump today announced his intent to nominate Carlos G. Muñiz to the Department of Education.
If confirmed, Carlos G. Muñiz of Florida will serve as General Counsel at the Department of Education. Mr. Muñiz is an attorney and consultant at McGuireWoods. His prior experience in government includes serving as Deputy Attorney General of the State of Florida and as Deputy General Counsel to the Governor of Florida. He earned degrees from the University of Virginia and from Yale Law School. After law school, he served as a law clerk to Judge José A. Cabranes of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and to Judge Thomas A. Flannery of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. Mr. Muñiz and his wife reside in Tallahassee, Florida, with their three children.

This is from the McGUIREWOODS LLC website:

Carlos G. Muñiz 

Senior Vice President, State Government Relations 

Carlos is senior vice president in the National & Multistate Strategies group of McGuireWoods Consulting LLC and a partner with McGuireWoods LLP. He provides senior level insight and advocacy for clients in their interaction with state attorneys general throughout the country and with the executive and legislative branches of Florida state government.

Prior to joining McGuireWoods, Carlos served for three years as the deputy attorney general and chief of staff to Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi. In that capacity he was responsible for managing the 400-lawyer agency and overseeing all functions, including enforcement and litigation, legislative affairs, and communications.

Carlos has worked with state attorneys general throughout the country and possesses substantial experience in multistate enforcement actions, consumer protection issues, government investigations, and disputes between the states and the federal government. Carlos has experience in matters involving a myriad of industries, including financial services, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, and education.

In addition to his service in the office of Florida’s attorney general, Carlos has held positions of significant responsibility throughout Florida state government. He served as deputy general counsel in the Office of Governor Jeb Bush; as a deputy chief of staff and counsel in the Office of the Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives; and as general counsel of the Florida Department of Financial Services.

Following his graduation from law school, Carlos served as a law clerk to Judge José A. Cabranes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and to Judge Thomas A. Flannery of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
- See more at:

Under "Experience," the CARLOS MUNIZ entry for the McGUIREWOODS website lists:

Represented a Florida public university in a government investigation and civil litigation over Title IX compliance issues.

Represented the Florida governor in litigation over Sunshine Law compliance.

Represents an educational institution in an attorney general multistate investigation of the institution’s marketing practices.

As Florida's deputy attorney general, worked on the historic National Mortgage Settlement; the multistate challenge to the Affordable Care Act; litigation over the Deepwater Horizon oil spill; Medicaid fraud matters; and consumer protection cases involving myriad industries.

Worked with attorneys general and their staffs throughout the country, including on multistate enforcement actions.

Oversaw the Florida attorney general's office participation in amicus briefs filed before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Over the course of a career in Florida state government and in private practice, briefed constitutional cases in state and federal appellate courts.

- See more at:

This is a list of a few of McGUIRE WOODS CONSULTING's list of more than clients from its website:

Having represented more than 400 clients in the past three years, McGuireWoods Consulting’s substantive expertise runs the full gamut of public policy issues at the state and federal levels. A partial list of our clients includes:

American Heart Association – Midwest Affiliate
American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR)
Balfour Beatty
Blue Cross/Blue Shield
Chesapeake Bay Foundation
Ford Motor Company
Illinois Manufactured Housing Association
Maersk, Inc.
National Basketball Association
Prairie Fork Wind Farm
Sherman Hospital
Skanska Infrastructure Development, Inc.
Smithfield Foods, Inc.
The City of Joliet
TYCO Electronics
Verizon Wireless
Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association
Waste Management, Inc.
- See more at:

This is the Center for Responsive Politics profile of McGuireWoods lobbying:


This is the article from Breitbart, which appeared on April 3, 2017, eight days before AP:

April 3, 2017

President Donald Trump plans to nominate Carlos G. Muñiz, a former attorney to former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, as general counsel to the U.S. Education Department (USED).

Muñiz is senior vice president for the firm McGuireWoods, based in Tallahassee, Florida.

According to his biography, Muñiz “provides senior level insight and advocacy for clients in their interaction with state attorneys general throughout the country and with the executive and legislative branches of Florida state government.”

“Carlos has experience in matters involving myriad industries, including financial services, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, and education,” his bio further states.

Muñiz also served as deputy attorney general and chief of staff to Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi. He earned degrees from the University of Virginia and Yale Law School.

Other U.S. Education Department staff who have worked for Bush at his foundation include Neil Ruddock, former regional advocacy director at FEE, and Josh Venable, who is now “senior advisor to the secretary” at USED.

Bush lost the GOP primary in 2016, in part because of his vocal support for the Common Core standards. U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos contributed financially and served as a board member of Bush’s pro-Common Core Foundation for Excellence in Education (FEE).

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