Attacks On Jewish Candidates Called Anti-Semitic


The backlash has started.

Political insiders bemoaning that lawyers with Jewish-sounding names are running against incumbent judges may have stepped over the line.

Joyce Kaufman has come out swinging.  Kaufman is a long-time fixture in South Florida broadcasting who now parks herself at WFTL 850-AM from noon to 3 p.m. on weekdays.  

“If they were talking about black or Italian names, can you imagine the outrage? Kaufman says. “But they are talking about Jews so people think, ‘Well, that’s okay.’

The criticism is that lawyers with Jewish-sounding names will be elected because Jews, a bloc of voters in the August 24 primary, will blindly vote for them.  

“Are they saying Jews are stupid?  Are they saying Jews are so dumb they can’t figure out who to vote for? This kind of stuff is so insidious, Kaufman says.

“Don’t vote for candidates who are inexperienced.  Don’t vote for candidates because they are bad.  When you start saying again and again that these are bad candidates and they have Jewish-sounding names, it creates a sinister environment, Kaufman continues.

She vows to start talking about her complaints on-air.

Kaufman is particularly annoyed by an article in the June issue of the Coral Ridge Monthly, which circulates in that eastern Fort Lauderdale neighborhood.  

The article states: “Good experienced judges are challenged because of their race or because they are not Jewish.”

It goes on that “inexperienced generally out of work or unsuccessful attorneys with Jewish sounding names think they can win a judicial seat on that fact alone.”


I believe the article is true.  Kaufman believes some of the language is  inflammatory.

The situation is complex and doesn’t lend itself to sound bites.  There are 15 judges being challenged and each race is different.  

Some flawed judicial candidates are hoping that their Jewish-sounding names will help them win against much more experienced incumbents.

Look at County Court Group 4.  War hero and experienced Judge Edward Merrigan Jr. is being challenged by defense attorney Lloyd Goldburgh. 

Or County Court Group 12.  Judge Jay Hurley, who has safely cut the population of the jail and saved taxpayers millions, is being challenged by the unremarkable Melissa Minsk Donoho.  The name “Minsk” is vaguely Jewish and was put on the ballot, I believe, for that reason.

But it is also true that some candidates with Jewish-sounding names would make better judges than the incumbents. And some candidates with Jewish sounding names are running for open seats.

Kaufman is on target.  When critics start criticizing candidates because they have Jewish-sounding names, they are playing with fire.

Virulent Anti-Semitism In Broward’s Past

Jews are right to be worried when candidates are singled out because they have Jewish-sounding names.

I am old enough to remember when a lawyer with a Jewish-sounding name couldn’t get appointed to the bench. Back then the process was controlled by the deeply anti-Semitic downtown Fort Lauderdale power structure.

It was only when Jews ran for office and won that they could become judges in Broward.

Talk to Don McClosky and he’ll tell you how Jewish lawyers couldn’t jobs back then.  So McClosky and some other Jewish lawyers formed their own firm, now known as Ruden McClosky, and got the last laugh.

Talk to Public Defender Howard Finkelstein.  Ask him how the anti-Semitism permeated the bench when he first started practicing in Broward.

Finkelstein has been one of the critics of inexperienced lawyers running for judge and hoping to win because they have a Jewish-sounding name.

But Finkelstein is careful to say that there are many qualified lawyers with Jewish-sounding names running, too.

Other critics of candidates challenging incumbent judges are not so careful. They talk about unqualified Jews trying to defeat our experienced non-Jewish judges.

It is blatant anti-Semitism to talk about a cabal of unqualified Jewish lawyers trying to take over the bench.

Discuss experience. Stop talking about Jewish names.

Jews have a sixth sense about anti-Semitism.  If Jewish voters believe that someone is trying to stop lawyers from becoming judges because they have Jewish-sounding names, they will vote for them in a landslide.

And bye bye incumbents.

21 Responses to “Attacks On Jewish Candidates Called Anti-Semitic”

  1. What WE Know says:

    I don’t know who who is qualified or not, who like me is Jewish or not, but what we do KNOW and Howard speaks to this is that there is an effort by a few with Jewish sounding names to wipe out three of the only five sitting African-American Judges on the bench. They did it to the Hispanics and now it’s the African-American people’s turn. Not right.
    Indeed Finkelstein is right.

    Opponents of these candidates need to point out they are unqualified and avoid blanket statements about lawyers with Jewish-sounding names.

    Judge Elijah Williams is being challenged by Alan Schneider. Williams is black and Schneider is a Jewish-sounding name. I believe Williams is a fine judge and a great role model for young African Americans.

    Judge Mary Rudd Robinson is being challenged by Jordan Howard Breslaw. But Breslaw, who to me appears to be a kook, is not using his legal name on the ballot. There is a law suit and he may get kicked off. Robinson also is a fine judge.

    However, Assistant Public Defender Mindy Solomon is running for an open seat against Roshawn Banks, a black attorney. Solomon works for Finkelstein.

    Judge Carlos Rebollo is being challenged by Robert Nichols. Nichols is not a Jewish-sounding name.

    Judge Carlos Rodriguez is being challenged by Frieda Goldstein. Obviously, Goldstein is a Jewish-sounding name and she is a flawed candidate that you can read about on (run her name or the judge’s name in the search feature on the home page).

  2. Everytime says:

    Everytime somebody points out something about Jews they yell anti-Semitism.

    It is a Fact that unqualified Jews are attempting to take over the courthouse.

    It is also a Fact that even Howard Finkelstein says that Jews are on the march and this will create a backlash against them.

    It is also a Fact that Joyce Kaufman is a jerk.

  3. Broward Lawyer says:

    Buddy says, “Judge Carlos Rebollo is being challenged by Robert Nichols. Nichols is not a Jewish-sounding name.”

    Judge Rebollo is a highly respected judge who has been on the bench since 2007. He is endorsed by Lori Parrish, Ann Zucker, Dianne Glasser, Adel Berger, Craig and Lori Glasser, Pembroke Pines Mayor Frank Ortis, Pembroke Pines Commissioner Angelo Castillo, Rep Perry Thurston, the AFL-CIO, the PBA and all GLBT groups and many others.
    Judge Rebollo believes in the Constitution and the separation of Church and State.

    Indeed, Robert Nichols is not Jewish, he is Irish. All voters should be concerned with Robert Nichols. On his Facebook Fan Page he quotes the Bible, the New Testament, Acts 20:35. On his Website he talks about God (Jesus Christ) getting him to help people by getting him to run for judge. Robert “Bob” Nichols seems like the second comming of that right-wing nut Judge Cheryl Aleman. Fortunately, Aleman is out of here after 2010 thanks to Sandra Perlman.

  4. j says:

    Buddy, you wait. Everyone is in tears now and the Jewish lawyers are pulling out the anti-sem. sword so they can run despite the lack of experience but in like 6 years even these new judges who win will be challenged by new Jewish names again — and again and again. Most of them dont care because their practice was in the tiolet or like a PD their salarly will double yet this will soon be just like Mdade – we are close. Like MDade County, the point missed here is that all of this means that politics will beget “justice” and no one gives a shit and u know what politics does to anything. Howard is smart enough to see that in my opinion.

  5. Dont Forget says:

    Public Defender, Olga Maria Gonzalez Levine aka Olga Levine vs Judge Luzzo.

    Publi Defender Debra Steinstaltz versus Judge Skolnik.

    Lets be clear, Howard has no issue with this, Howard has no issue with the above women using their fine Jewish names to run against an Anglo non-minority and Skolnik who is Jewish but without an obvious Jewish name. Howard is a racist against white, non jews. He has made it clear that he only takes issue with Jews running against minorities. If a Jew is using their name to run against a average Anglo white person, then game on.

  6. Politics says:

    It is just politics. Jews will vote for Jews is they know nothing else about the candidate. So will Irish and Cubans and everybody else.

    If the Jewish candidates are beaten this time around, new ones will arise in 2012. No amount of money can stop it or change human nature.

    The only change that would work would be to change the law to require judges have 10 years experience to run.

  7. Ruden says:

    Ruden McClosky which once had @ 180 lawyers is now down to @90 and falling. I’m not sure it’s accurate to say that they’ve had “the last laugh.”

    They are something like 50-years-old and outlasted many of the firms that refused to hire Jews back then. Ruden has had a long run and continue to have some of the premier lawyers in Broward, despite any setbacks from the recession.

  8. Sharon T. Zane says:

    As someone who takes my right and duty to vote very seriously, judicial races have long been a source of heartburn for me. The rules seem designed to keep the voters as ignorant as possible about the candidates’ judicial philosophies and temperments. Couple this with the Sun-Sentinel’s dismal coverage of what goes on at the courthouse, and we have voting by ethnic affiliation. The newspaper for the little town where I grew up has a regular feature called “Decisions of YOUR Judges”. I wish we had something like that here.

  9. Rastas says:

    Jews have a stranglehold on political and economic life in Broward, much as the Mormons do in Utah.
    It’s normal that they would fight to keep such power, even if it entails mounting an ethnic jihad against judges who are goys.
    It’s pretty clear who the bigots are here, even if some other Jews don’t want to admit it.

  10. Dr. Jordan Howard Breslaw, Esq. says:

    Dear Buddy:

    You have never met me, nor have you ever taken the time to contact me, and you call me a “kook?” Why, because I changed my name? Am I the only person in America that has a surname and a birth name? Is “Buddy” your real name? How many women do you know that have a married surname and a birth name?

    I have a constitutional right to use my birth name on the ballot and the lawsuit filed against me is frivolous, harassment and shall be dismissed.

    Go to and compare qualifications, and stop being disrespectful.


    I should have called you worse.

    After looking at your website, I believeyou are playing the race card. Isn’t that why you put a flattering picture of yourself compared with the out-of-focus unflattering headshot of Judge Mary Rudd Robinson?

    You want to show that you are white and she is black, right? I would hope we were beyond that type of politics, but then here you are.

    Your website is also highly misleading. Not a surprise since you are running under a name you no longer use and legally changed, according to a law suit against you.

    You write that 28 percent of the attorneys in a Broward Bar poll say Robinson lacked knowledge of the law. What you don’t say is that only 99 lawyers out of 7,108 eligible to vote cast ballots.

    You mention on your website that the judge is not a medical expert. What you leave out is there is very little need for that skill in county court?

    On your home page, you repeatedly call yourself a doctor and a medical expert. You conveniently leave out that you are a chiropractor, not a medical doctor. I’m not selling chiropractors short, but there is a big difference.

    I do notice one thing missing from your website. There is not any reason given why voters should replace Judge Robinson. Has she done a poor job? All I see is that you are white and she is black.


  11. You could hear a pin drop says:

    Speaking of Finkelstien, I dont remember hearing his outrage in 08′ when the two Hispanic Judges lost to Jews who ran on their names. Of course, again, one worked in his office. I am glad to see that Howard now sees Hispanics as minorities. Of course it has nothing to do with his old friend Carlos Rodriguez getting an opponent, nah no way.

  12. anonymous prosecutor for truth says:

    Buddy, I’ve been paying particular attention to your comments about Lloyd Golburgh and Judge Ed Merrigan and how you characterize the two despite the fact that in one of you earlier posts, you admitted you knew neither man. I believe it’s time to set the record straight. Here’s the bottom line. As a career prosecutor, I’ve known Mr. Golburgh for years. In fact, I remember when he started trying cases in front of county court Judges almost 15 years ago. He happens to be an excellent lawyer with a boat-load of jury trial experience and a good man. He knows county court law and procedure as well as any of the defense lawyers I’ve seen come through the courthouse and he’s more prepared than most. He has spent practically his entire legal career practicing in the county courthouse downtown. It is true that he is known as a DUI defense attorney. In fact, he’s known in our office as one of the best in his field. Although you think that’ a negative and so may others, I don’t. I think it makes him uniquely qualified to sit as a judge on misdemeanor cases. After all, that’s what he’s spent his career handling. He’s actualy paid his dues and I for one think he’d make an excellent Judge. As far as Judge Merrigan is concerned, I’m not surprised that you don’t know him. In fact, not many people do. So I researched him. What I found was that he came from the outside. I also learned that he indeed is a decorated soldier, but you are inaccurate when you post that he has much more experience than Mr. Golburgh. In fact, he has little to no jury trial experience and virtually no criminal law experience at all. The truth can be found in Governer Crist’s letter appointing him to the court. Judge Merrigan was educated in Tennessee, Alabama, and Georgia and spent the bulk of his legal career sitting behind a desk working for the establishment. Specifically, he worked for Bank of America and Barnett bank suing little people on behalf of those banks. He also worked for law firms who defended corporations, large and small, insurance companies against claimants, and employers against employees. In fact, one of the law firms for whom he worked boasts that they would be happy to garnish your wages should their collections efforts be otherwise unsuccessful. Judge Merrigan may have been a lawyer 4 or 5 years longer than Mr. Golburgh, but in terms of actual hands-on litigation, jury trial, and in-court experience, Mr. Golburgh is much more qualified. If you ask around the legal community, I predict your experience will be similar to mine and many of the lawyers (and actually some judges). They will tell you they don’t know Judge Merrigan. What is true is that his wife is a law partner in the same law firm as the head of the JNC, Richard Zaden, and his brother-in-law, Mayor Seiler. So it would appear he got the appointment because of whom he knew. Look back to the argument made during the time Mr. Merrigan was applying for an appointment. Many people were using words like ‘nepotism’ and ‘cronyism’ to describe his relationship with Mayor Seiler and Richard Zaden. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying Merrigan isn’t a good Judge or that he shouldn’t win the election. I’m simply saying that you should report the facts, not what you admit is your uneducated opinion of the two candidates. Also, if you or anyone else thinks that Judge Merrigan’s status as a military man should carry the day, that’s fine. Everyone has the right to vote based on any reason they choose. But I would like to see you report the facts as they are rather than your own subjective opinion and let the people decide on the merits.

    Merrigan was a lawyer in the Army handling all types of cases — civil and criminal.

    Referring to Golburgh as a “drink driving attorney” is accurate. I believe concentrating on one type of practice is not a well-rounded background for a judge.

    But I agree with you that there is nothing wrong with defending those charged with DUI.

    Consequently, I have removed the phrase you pointed out.

    I have no reason to believe Golburgh is anything but a good lawyer. He just gives us no reason why Merrigan needs to be replaced.

  13. White mans water says:

    Judge Elijah Williams put it in writing ” that he would not carry the white mans water” and quit the diversity group. How racist is that for a judge to say. If it was a white judge the press would of hung him. Williams could of made a difference if he was committed to be fair and color blind. Not Elijah

  14. Et tu Parker? says:


    Like Breslaw, I heard that Oliver Parker with his new brochure is doing the same “comparison piece” tactic against Judge Gillespie that was made famous by Dan Lewis/Diane Glasser in the Kaplan-Thurston race. They play on the racial fears of voters with comparison pictures of White against Black.

  15. Nice Try says:

    Sure Judy nice try trying to deflect your work with Parker on to Glasser and….drumroll please…Dan Lewis. With your obsession with Dan Lewis you are probably with Seidmans who are good friends with your pal Backman. Judy, nice try joining the Rebollo campaign facebook page, lol. Carlos and his supporters have heard how you convinced Nichols that your bud Rodriguez was the wrong Hispanic to run against.

  16. Broward Lawyer says:

    We know Judy Stern is working for Carlos Rodriguez, but is Stern really working for Oliver Parker?
    If so, that says 2 things. One she is desperate and two, Judge Gillespie will easily win.

  17. Do the math says:

    42 judicial candidates. Only Solomon and Carlos are with Stern. Stern has no School Board candidates and 1 County Commission candidate. Parker can spend more than most of the judicial candidates combined. All about the payday.

    Why did little boy blew? Cause he needed the $$$$$$

  18. southfl1 says:

    I hate when chiropractors use their creds like this guy is using his. My husband is a “juris doctor” of law…I guess he is a doctor too. Chiropractors are not medical doctors. I would never trust one with my back in a million years.

  19. Rastas says:

    Chiropractors are not medical doctors. I would never trust one with my back in a million years.

    Funny, that’s how long most chiropractors would like you to sign up for.

  20. christine says:

    Recently, there was another opinion from Howard Finkelstein in the Sun Sentinel about the “targeting” of minority candidates. So I did what he suggested – compare the resumes of the candidates. I chose Nichols v. Rebollo.

    Both went to accredited law schools, Nichols in Florida, Rebollo in Iowa.

    Both worked as a prosecutor. Nichols both in Pinellas County and Broward County. Rebollo in New Jersey and Broward County. Nichols was a prosecutor for about 11 years, Rebollo for 21. Both have done advanced criminal prosecutions.

    That seems to be where the similarities end. Nichols then lists experience in civil work with Allstate Insurance and a private firm and also, criminal defense work also in private practice. Rebollo has no such experience in either civil work or criminal defense.

    Nichols further lists extensive volunteer work and professional affiliations. Rebollo has very little and only recent, since his appointment to the bench.

    It’s clear from the comparison that Nichols is the best choice. Thanks Howard for the insight. I’m glad I followed your instruction instead of relying on your opinion.

  21. Sheranda says:

    I am an AMERICAN white female looking to vote for the best candidate albeit white, black, Jew. Asian etc! Howard Finklestein basically calling Nicols a racist!! I have to agree with Christine, I also compared the candidates and found Nichols to be more qualified.
    I find it ironic that Howard insinuating racism is the deciding factor in determining who you run against makes him just as much a racist. It seems if you do not agree with any one on a subject and you are unlucky enough to be white, you are now a racist. Seems like we are sadley digressing!