Redner has been engaged in legal battles with the Tampa City Council, which has tried to place restrictions on the strip club industry for 25 years. Mons Venus and Redner have filed suits that have reached the Supreme Court and have become case law in many court cases. Redner ran for County Commissioner as an independent in 2006. During that run Redner had a chair thrown at him on the Bleepin Truth LIVE in a debate with a Republican pundit. The clip from the show was carried on 300 TV stations across the country, giving Redner a tremendous boost in name recognition in the process. Redner's website, The Voice of Freedom, was initially created to inform citizens of his ongoing legal battles with the government, but later expanded to cover other First Amendment issues. He is a host of a weekly, live call-in TV program entitled First Freedom TV on Tampa Bay Community Network (TBCN.org), a local Tampa Bay area Public, educational, and government access (PEG) cable tv channel.
In a federal lawsuit filed against Hillsborough County commissioners after they banned the county itself from recognizing gay pride displays, Redner included the statement that he is gay. In an earlier version of the same suit Redner, did not mention his sexual orientation and had previously never mentioned it publicly. His fight against the ordinance has pitted him against local politician Ronda Storms on many occasions.
On March 6, 2007, Redner garnered the number two spot in a six-person race for Tampa City Council, District 1, and faced the incumbent chairperson in a runoff March 27, 2007. Joe Redner lost the election gaining 44% of the vote.
Medical marijuana case
In 2018, Redner made headlines again when he sued the Florida Department of Health for the right to grow his own marijuana. Redner is in remission from lung cancer, and his doctor recommended hemp juice as part of his treatment. Florida passed medical marijuana via a constitutional amendment in 2016, but juicing is not one the methods approved by that law, so Redner sued to be able to grow and juice his own. On April 17, 2018, the judge in the case lifted a stay which will allow Redner to begin growing marijuana while the case proceeds, a decision the Department of Health said it plans to appeal.
- Zink, Janet (March 25, 2007), "He's the ultimate outsider", St. Petersburg Times, retrieved 2007-10-23 CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "Does nude-club king's cash come dressed like the rest?". Council for American-Islamic Relations. Archived from the original on 2007-10-23. Retrieved 2006-11-12. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "Announcement of film of strip club owner/freedom fighter Joe Redner". Florida State University Film School. Archived from the original on 2004-07-10. Retrieved 2006-11-12. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "Hillsborough bans county from recognizing gay pride", St. Petersburg Times, June 16, 2006, retrieved 2007-03-28 CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- Liberto, Jennifer; George, Justin (December 13, 2005), "'Out-front' and now, openly, he's out", St. Petersburg Times, retrieved 2007-10-23 CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "Adult club owner wins big in eminent domain case". Tampa Bay Business Journal. 2005-08-08. Retrieved 2006-11-12. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "Miller fights back challenge by Redner". March 28, 2007. Retrieved 2007-03-28. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "On my television program one night in May 2004, I deviated from my normal format which is to take live phone calls from viewers, giving them Biblical counsel for their problems and praying for them. I had as my guest Joe Redner, a Tampa businessman who is also the long-time owner of a famous strip club in Tampa. My purpose for having Joe on my program was to allow him to share his beliefs and why he feels owning and operating an adult establishment is acceptable. I am well aware that Joe has been debating this issue legally and morally for over 30 years and has his "talking points" down pat. I am also very aware that he views Christians as his enemy and the people who are "out to get him."" Live Prayer Daily Devotional for June 1 2005 Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine; Accessed 08-23-2007