Update: Candidate Hires Attack Firm And More

 

 

BY BUDDY NEVINS

 

 

Plantation Commissioner Bob Levy’s re-election seems like a slam dunk since he is running against a largely unknown candidate with little money.

So why is he hiring one of the most notorious attack campaign specialists.

Cornerstone Management Partners of New Jersey got $2,250 of Levy’s campaign money. The firm has been involved in a number of races, most recently with a slew of attack ads in Miami-Dade.

Here is from a complaint reprinted in the Miami Herald:

The ROBO calls were designed and intended as an attack on Hialeah Mayor Julio Robaina, and to advance the Carlos Gimenez Mayoral campaign. One of the ROBO calls is particularly offensive, designed to appeal to and incite prejudice toward Hispanics, and advocates as follows:

   We aren’t Hialeah. Nor do we want to be. Hialeah mayor and millionaire developer Julio Robaina wants us to trust him. He wants to be mayor. We can’t trust Hialeah’s Robaina. Irresponsible development, traffic congestion and noise, backroom deals and illegal gambling — is that what we want in our neighborhood? Of course not. We aren’t Hialeah. Nor do we want to be. Let’s stop Hialeah’s Robaina from importing his brand of shady politics to our neighborhood. Let’s stop career politician Robaina.

“Miami-Dade County residents received this ROBO during the weekend of May 20th. As a resident, Zoo Miami director Ron Magill was so offended that he sent an unsolicited e-mail about this offensive ROBO call to the Julio Robaina Mayoral campaign.”

Various media reports trace the attack ROBO calls to Cornerstone.

The website Eye On Miami states that Cornerstone’s ownership “seems to be” part of the network of political trickster Roger Stone. Elnatan Rudolph, a New Jersey operative who is a self-described Stone protege, is behind the company.

Rudolph was alleged to be behind a searing ad aimed at Attorney General candidate Dan Gelber three years ago.  The ad called Gelber “toxic to Jewish Education” and was found to be false by various media fact checkers.

Is Levy Bringing These Type Of Attacks To Plantation?

Races that Cornerstone is involved in are touched by dirty tricks as illustrated in a story this week in the Miami Herald concerning phantom absentee requests in Miami-Dade.  Cornerstone was managing candidates in the races, although no wrongdoing has been alleged by them.

I tried to ask Levy why he is hiring such a firm.

One theory, widespread from here to Tallahassee, is that the money is really being passed through to a local political operative and office holder. Such an arrangement — if true — borders on violations of the election laws.  Surely it is designed to avoid disclosure.

That’s another thing I would like to ask Levy. He did not return calls left on his cell phone voice mail.

Hmmmm.

Where Are We?

 

Would somebody tell Plantation candidate Chris Zimmerman where he is?

Below is the ad he ran in the ParkEast development newsletter.  ParkEast as in east of Florida’s Turnpike.  Far from Plantation Acres, which is another neighborhood in western Plantation.

If he can’t bother to proof his ads….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Missing Contributions

 

Sometimes the Sun-Sentinel gets it right and wrong at the same time.

The paper’s website had a story — I won’t embarrass the reporter, who I don’t know, by using her name  –  that said Deerfield Beach mayoral candidate Peggy Noland got $3,500 “companies associated with the two big players currently competing for lucrative trash disposal contracts.”

Wrong.

She got $4,000 from companies and $2,000 more from individuals and lobbyists associated with either Wheelabrator and Ron Bergeron’s waste company.

The story goes on to state that “Norland is the only one of five candidates for mayor and District 3 commissioner who’s gotten money from either company.”

That appears to be true.

But it is misleading since one candidate got money from a lobbying firm working for Bergeron.

Now I‘m not going to lay out who the reporter missed since the website post says the paper is working on another story about contributions.  Let’s see if the Sun-Sentinel gets it right the next time.

The truly amazing fact from all this math:  Out of $17,600 in Robb’s campaign, $6,000 came from waste companies.

It shows you how much money there is in your garbage pail.

 

Lobbyist’s Million Dollar Charity 

 

 

 

Lauren’s Kids is everywhere.  That’s the charity that lobbyist Ron Book and his daughter Lauren Book, run.

It was the beneficiary of a party held to celebrate the opening of a new Macy’s menshop in Aventura last week.  Next month, Lauren Book gets an award at the St. Patrick’s Day breakfast held by the Emerald Society.

So how big is Lauren’s Kids, which is an advocate for abused children?

Below is the latest IRS statement publicly available from the government files (I cut the top off so it would all fit without any further reduction in size).  As always, click on it to enlarge:

 

 

 

 

 



7 Responses to “Update: Candidate Hires Attack Firm And More”

  1. Plantation Historian says:

    He may have accidentally sent the wrong ad but smoked Tingom in the Sun Sentinel candidate interview. I will vote for the guy with a vision over the life long bureaucrat and Armstrong suckling! Bye bye “Pete”!

  2. Watching the Race says:

    Buddy,

    Isn’t the original plantation acres west of turnpike and north of broward. Holly Lane and East Acre Dr are 2 streets there that I remember. East acre drive is literally 1 block west of the turnpike. So any chance the seat he’s running for has that as part of his district?

    You’re pretty good with checking your facts, but you may be wrong here.

    FROM BUDDY:

    I’m not wrong. Plantation Acres today, which is what counts, is a neighborhood west of Hiatus Road. The newsletter was for a neighborhood in far eastern Plantation.

  3. Broward HGA says:

    If my memory serves me correct, 501(c)3 organizations are prohibited from donating to political campaaigns. If you research hard enough you may find that there are circumstances where Laurens Kids may have donated to Candidate(s) that reside in Broward County.

  4. Connect the dots says:

    Here’s an interesting article from yesterday’s Herald. It may help to put together some of the pieces of the puzzle. http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/02/23/3250726/the-case-of-the-phantom-ballots.html#storylink=misearch

  5. Floridan says:

    What’s your point on Lauren’s Kids?

    I say the more donations non-profits like this make, the better for the community.

    Or are you implying that something is amiss here?

    FROM BUDDY:

    Nothing is amiss that I know of. Several people asked me just how big was the charity. I decided to answer them and since it is extremely high profile, posted my answer.

  6. Plain Language says:

    Ron Book was too busy being a lobbyist to notice that for years his daughter Lauren was growing up being abused by a caregiver in own his house.

    Years later when Book discovered this fact he was so overwhelmed with anger and guilt that he created this non-profit to help him through that process. He leans on his political cronies to fund it.

    The notoriety this group has more to do with Book than the work they do. They don’t do much at all and increasingly we see Book using the group as a tool to achieve his own political ends.

    Ron Book is a lobbyist. That means he makes a living appearing to be smarter, more important, more powerful and a much better person than can possibly be the case. The same smoke and mirror hype is true of his non-profit. Once you peel off the hype there really isn’t much substance going on there.

    FROM BUDDY:

    I guess you are a mind reader and have the ability to determine that he was “overwhelmed with anger and guilt.” Or keep his calendar so you know that when he was younger he was “too busy” to notice that his daughter was being abused (Apparently his wife was too busy, too). You are blaming the victim’s father — a victim himself — for the acts of the criminal.

    I know that Ron Book is no angel. I also knows, unlike too many other lobbyists, that he donated endless amount of his time to various charities long before his daughter’s troubles. He was a major force behind homeless centers in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. He has worked pro-bono on bills for worthy causes.

    So I think any examination of his motives are not as black-and-white as you write here.

  7. Plantation Historian says:

    Plain language….see you do not mind throwing rocks. Must be so nice to be perfect so you can judge others.

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