This week on Breaking Battlegrounds, we are joined by Congressman John Rutherford of Florida’s Fifth Congressional District and Vincent Vernuccio, a senior fellow at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.
John Rutherford (FL-05) is serving his third term in the U.S. House of Representatives. He sits on the House Ethics Committee and House Appropriations Committee, where he serves on three subcommittees: Homeland Security, Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Transportation and Housing and Urban Development.
John has lived in Jacksonville, Florida since 1958, and attended Florida Junior College and Florida State University where he studied Criminology. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy, 171st Session and the National Executive Institute. He began his career in law enforcement in 1974 as a patrolman in the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, working his way up through the JSO where he eventually served as Director.
In 2003, 2007, and 2011, John was elected Sheriff of Duval County. For three terms and twelve years, John ran a 3,200 employee office, and due to his effective leadership, homicide and overall violent crime in Jacksonville dropped to a 40-year low. Using a model of intelligence-led and community-based policing, John and his team of law enforcement professionals dramatically improved neighborhoods and prevented crime throughout the community. He also made the mental health component of the criminal justice system a priority, reducing the recidivism rates of the mentally ill and facilitating their treatment. John also served as Chair of the Legislative Committee for Florida Sheriff’s Association, where he advocated before the legislature for policies that strengthened constitutional rights, supported our law enforcement, and enhanced public safety across the state.
John has been happily married to his wonderful wife Pat for fifty years. They enjoy their two children, six grandchildren and great grandson, and they are also devoted members of Assumption Catholic Church in Jacksonville.
F. Vincent Vernuccio is a senior fellow at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. He served as the Mackinac Center’s director of labor policy between 2012 and 2017.
Vernuccio is a graduate of the Ave Maria School of Law in Ann Arbor, Mich. Under President George W. Bush he served as special assistant to the assistant secretary for administration and management in the Department of Labor.
Vernuccio has published articles and op-eds in such newspapers and magazines as The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Investor’s Business Daily, The Washington Times, National Review, Forbes and The American Spectator. He has been cited in several books, and he is a frequent contributor on national television and radio shows, such as “Your World” with Neil Cavuto and Varney and Company.
Vernuccio is a sought-after voice on labor panels nationally and in Washington, D.C. and as a regular guest on Fox News channels.
He has advised senators and congressmen on a multitude of labor-related issues. He testified before the United States House of Representatives Subcommittee on Federal Workforce, Postal Service and Labor Policy.