Update: Another Broward Democratic Blunder





Democrats have a problem.

They had a chance to pick up a commission seat in Plantation. Now it seems like they have bungled that opportunity.

Fumbling an opportunity is nothing new for Broward Democrats.  In the last election, there was a good possibility that the right Democratic candidates could defeat Republicans County Commissioner Chip LaMarca and State Rep. George Moraitis. 

LaMarca and Moraitis won.  The D’s blew it.

Here is how the D’s messed up this time:

There is a Plantation commission seat being given up by Jerry Fadgen, a Republican who is running for mayor. This would be a chance for the D’s to pick up that seat.

Instead of getting behind one Democratic candidate, four Ds entered the field.  And one Republican—the deeply flawed Rico Petrocelli.

Chances are very good that the four Democratic candidates will divide the vote, thus allowing Petrocelli to win.

It is true that municipal races are non-partisan. It is also true that parties and party activists campaign hard for their members running in municipal elections.

Democrats are very worried. During a meeting earlier this month, members of the Plantation Democratic Club spoke about the uncertain chances of the Democrats in the race .

Plantation is one of Broward’s biggest cities. A Republican win would be a local Democratic setback.

This is a problem of the Democrat’s own making.

Forward-thinking Democrats would have pressured one or two of the Democrats to drop out.

That’s just smart politics.

Forward-thinking Democrats would have quietly encouraged a second Republican to run in Plantation, thus splitting the GOP vote.

That’s just smart politics.

Clearly two of the Democratic candidates — Claudette Hammond and Jeff Holness — are long shots.  Pete Tingom already had his shot, having been a one-term commissioner who was voted out of office in 2011.

The fourth Democrat,  Louis Reinstein, is a well-experienced fresh face. He was a teacher and is now a lawyer, who spends part of his time doing pro-bono work for veterans. He’s the kind of young Democrat that the party sees as its future, along with folks like Mayor Mike Ryan in Sunrise and state Rep. Katie Edwards. (Ironically, Edwards beat Resinstein in a state House race in 2012.)

Democratic Leader Mitch Ceasar tried to point this out to candidates.  He tried to get Democrats out of the race, but failed, a source says.

Cynthia Busch and her Plantation Democratic Club has put out the word quietly to three of the Democratic candidates that they are supporting just one Democrat —  Reinstein, according to several sources. Busch and other club members may deny favoring Reinstein, but Holness complained about the club’s picking one Democrat over others at the meeting this month.

So what can Democrats do now?

One option:

Raise some money and flood Republican and independent voters with mailed ads pointing out that Petrocelli has filed bankruptcy three times, was fined by the ethics commission and owes the City $4,558.96 after promising to pay for health insurance and not paying.

Some Republicans, who preach fiscal responsibility, would be shocked!

That also would be smart politics.

Do I expect Democrats to put an anti-Petrocelli campaign together?

Absolutely not.

The Ds are too busy snatching defeat from the jaws of victory…once again.



11 Responses to “Update: Another Broward Democratic Blunder”

  1. Count LF Chodkiewicz Chudzikiewicz says:

    The Democrats outside of Jewish or Black majority districts are clueless and have been clueless for DECADES! Remember the race between Democratic outgoing Representative Elaine Bloom and then “Democrat” David Dermer for Mayor of Miami Beach, a Democratic stronghold? Elaine Bloom brought in Democratic “experts” from Washington, D.C. and Florida State Democrats and David Dermer brought in now Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer – a former Republican operative in the US – and they got Republican Governor Jed Bush to “push” Dermer from number two in the race to the winner in the runoff!!!!! Then “Democratic” Mayor David Dermer light the Hannukah lights in the President George W. bush White House and help get out the Jewish Democratic vote for Republican President Bush!
    Look at Joe Garcia, a fluke winner of a Cuban Congressional District who had a terrible attendance at Miami Beach Planning Board meetings, etc. and before that running the once vaunted Cuban National Foundation into the ground? The “experts” let negative publicity on Joe Garcia ad up over two years, and he lost the seat to a Cuban American Republican. Both Republicans you name are known to go to meeting after meeting in their respective districts. The “Democratc challengers” are notorious for only catering to THEIR PERSONAL FRIENDS and ignoring the community, rarely if ever appearing at Civil Association, Condo Association or any kind of local meeting. A Democratic candidate like John P. Seiler wins 70% plus of the vote because every weekend he’s like a rabbit going to every local event including park cleanups and painting vacant houses and dirty walls. It’s about SERVING THE PUBLIC NOT YOUR BUDDIES!!!!!

  2. Vote For Reinstein says:

    Jacob Reinstein should win this. He is heads and shoulders above the other candidates. Holness and Hammond are idiots, Tingom was nothing when he was on the commission and Petrocelli is a crook.


    You might support Reinstein, but you don’t know his name. Its LOUIS RESINSTEIN, not Jacob Reinstein.

  3. Ducking The Questions says:

    The Sun-Sentinel says Rico never showed up for his endorsement meeting like all the others. I guess Rico doesn’t want to answer questions about his moral and financial bankruptcies.

  4. Second time the charm? says:

    If Louis loses (again), he will have an incredibly hard time being taken seriosuly in the future. A lot is on the line for him.

  5. broward law says:

    Why go to an endorsement you’re not going to win anyeay?

  6. Chaz Stevens, I am Festivus says:

    Vote for Rico!

    Help keep him from another bankruptcy!

  7. Bob Adams says:

    Republican leadership in Broward County is good at cultivating candidates from the start. For the most part, that is not true of the Democrats. Much falls to long time activists, who work hard for their candidates. But try being a non-incumbent Democrat running for municipal office, the party leadership doesn’t know you, and does not want to know you.

  8. Also There says:

    Excuse the suggestion, but Count Chocula seems to have an awful lot to say for a guy who’s half a psycho.


    The count is a long time activist in Miami-Dade and is getting more active here.

  9. Plain Language says:

    The count? Count of what? You people are kidding, right?

  10. City Activist robert Walsh says:

    I don’t think that there was any screw up plain and simple. Both Comm.Larmarca and Mr.moratis were better canidates. The residents are sick and tired of some of these shady polticians such as Ken Keechl and others(Gay Mafia). Here in Ft.lau we have Comm.Trantalis who is running for another term .. Real lesson here people be very careful who you vote for. Do your homework…..

  11. count l f chodkiewicz chudzikiewicz says:

    Dear mr nevins,
    You are the professional reporter we have trusted for years but this reputed felon seems to be slandering a elected official who cannot
    Sue under sullivan vs ny times.