BY BUDDY NEVINS
Flotsam from the Scott Rothstein Ponzi scheme is threatening to disrupt a key Florida Democratic legal team as it prepares for next year’s election.
Republican trickster Roger Stone is taking aim at Berger Singerman, one of the mainstay of the Democrats in Florida.
The firm sued Stone last week. The firm, appointed to oversee the Rothstein law firm’s bankrupcy, is seeking to recover up to $350,000 that was paid Stone for political work.
Vowing not to pay “a dime,” Stone always believes that a good defense is an offense. He said he will launch an ad campaign against the Las Olas Boulevard law firm for earning millions from the bankruptcy of Rothstein.
According to a printed media report, the bankruptcy court distributed $11 million of a total $18 million to Berger Singerman.
Stone said he will raise the money – up to $1 million, probably from well-heeled Republicans – to pay for the ad campaign.
“The GONIFS at Berger-Singerman have wealthy enemies,” Stone wrote to Browardbeat.com, capitalizing the Yiddish word for a thief.
For Stone and Berger-Singerman, this is Round Two. Round One was the 2000 Presidential Recount.
Firm founder Mitchell Berger, a leading national Democratic fund raiser, and his partner Charles Lichtman were strategists for Al Gore’s Florida legal team. Stone was working for Republicans and is credited with orchestrating a near riot which shut down the Miami-Dade ballot recount.
A near riot was just another notch on Stone’s six-gun. He first learned ferocious hard ball politics – some would call them political dirty tricks — working for Richard Nixon. In fact, Stone has Nixon’s face tattooed on his back.
Roger Stone, from New Yorker Magazine
Stone today gets six-figure fees for referendums and GOP campaigns. He has lots of high rolling friends.
Since the Recount, Berger and Singerman have become voting rights specialists for Democrats. The firm watched Florida polls in 2004 and 2008 to insure that Republicans were not scaring away Democratic voters.
That is how and why Stone will have an easy time raising money to run the ads.
Anything that distracts the Democrats legal team — that includes a stinging attack ad campaign targeting them personally – can only hassle Barack Obama and the D’s ticket next year.
Here is portions of Stone’s statement to Browardbeat.com:
The lawsuit is without merit. I earned every penny I was paid by RRA* for professional services which had value. I have rejected any offer to settle for a lesser amount. I am confident of my legal defenses and will vigorously contest the action.
Frankly, I relish the opportunity to put Berger Singerman on trial and expose the illegal actions of their attorneys. ..Before the matter is settled I fully expect those at Berger-Singerman who have committed illegal acts and those who covered them up to be disbarred. I also expect those who have conflicts to be fully exposed. The biggest rip-off since the Rothstein Ponzi scheme is the massive legal fees being paid to Berger-Singerman…I have been warned about the cozy nature of the legal-judicial fraternity in Broward County. This does not concern me to me as any adverse ruling in Broward will be appealed. I do have confidence in the integrity of the (Appeals) Judges.
I will never pay these corrupt bloodsuckers a dime. I intend to educate the public about the crimes… through a TV ad campaign in the Miami-Fortl Lauderdale market. I will spend $1 M for his campaign –none of it mine. The GONIFS at Berger-Singerman have wealthy enemies.
I beat Mitch Berger and Chuck Lichtman in Bush V. Gore and I will beat their asses again.
(*RRA: Scott Rothstein’s defunct law firm, Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler.)