Demo Boss Mitch Ceasar A Big Winner



One big winner Tuesday was not on the ballot: Broward Democratic boss Mitch Ceasar.


Mitch Ceasar


The victory should take some of the pressure within the party off Ceasar. He is facing an attempt to topple him during an organizational meeting of the party next month.

The big Democratic victory removed a reason to dump Ceasar.  He has been accused of not doing enough to help Democrats win.

This time no sensible person can argue about Ceasar’s role.  He did what Democratic activists are supposed to do – help win elections.

Now, some may claim that Ceasar had little to do with President Barack Obama’s huge Broward triumph.

That’s a ridiculous argument because there is no way to prove or disprove it.

Democratic activists shouldn’t fight over who was responsible for the election.

Ds should bask in the amazing achievement of having Obama win the same 67 percent of the vote as he did in 2008. Despite the lower turnout this year, Obama got a vote margin of roughly 254,000, compared with just under 255,000 in 2008.

Equally important:  The Democratic ticket largely won.

Was that the result of the distribution of more than 1 million blue palm cards, one authored by the Young Democrats and consultant Dan Lewis and the other put out by Ceasar’s Democratic Party?

Who knows?

Democratic School Board candidate Franklin Sands was on both cards and lost to Republican incumbent Donna Korn.

The Obama for America volunteers, many new to politics, had a lot to do with the turnout and the success of the Democratic ticket.

OFA poll workers were walking up and down the lines reminding voters to vote for Obama and every Democrat. Two OFA volunteers –not part of the local party – came to my door and told me to vote for every D.

Bottom line:  It was a team effort and Ceasar was part of the team.

56 Responses to “Demo Boss Mitch Ceasar A Big Winner”

  1. Mr. Mucho says:

    If Mich Cesar is the big winner, than Richard DeNapoli is a giant LOSER. DeNapoli ran around town having his wife take pictures of him at every moment. The guy has real mental issues similar Richard Nixon. Members of the Broward GOP will be sending a message to DeNapoli soon.

    PS – Michael Ahern should run the Broward GOP, he got more Republicans elected in Broward this go around than DeNapoli!

  2. Interesting says:

    So. If there is no way to prove whether Mitch Ceaser did or did not lead this move why is the writer giving Mr Ceaser credit?
    Let there be change.
    Was Mr Ceaser at Mr Nevins door?
    The Answer is no.

  3. Nick Steffens says:


    How exactly did Mitch do to help win the election? The only actual evidence I have of him being involved in this election at all is the palm cards. It’s worth noting that these were not made available in time to get to many absentee voters (and there was no effort by the party to get them to remaining absentee voters.)

    Of course, there was Mitch’s brilliant idea to have a BBQ on the first day of early voting that OFA made him cancel. Who in their right mind takes volunteers away from the polls and get out the vote activity on a critical day of the Election?

    Mitch benefited from a very strong effort by the Obama campaign in Broward. Mitch, as usual, did nothing.

    Mitch still has to account for 2010 when the Sink campaign did nothing in Broward and Mitch organized nothing to benefit the Sink campaign except awful palm cards and the worst mail piece I think I’ve ever seen. In 2014, Rick Scott has to be run out of town and Broward needs to be a big part of it.

    If the Obama campaign was not as strong as it was and we had to rely on Mitch to fill in gaps, we wouldn’t be looking at the same result as 2010.

    It’s also worth noting that Broward continues to be toward the bottom of voter turnout in elections. I believe Broward was 65 of 67 counties in Florida. Being toward the bottom has been standard the last four years in all elections. Mitch has NEVER run a get out the vote program during this time.

    Mitch also has to account for Coral Springs. That city was true blue for Obama in his re-election but now 4 of the 5 City Commissioners are Republicans. Even worse is that Mark Gendal who ran for the CS Commission and is a supposed friend of Mitch’s received virtually no support from the County party.

    And this all leaves out the allegations raised by Bob Norman about his conduct toward women as party chair. The most important aspect of this is that Mitch never bothered to refute them. If I was accused of doing these things and didn’t do them, I would be screaming from rooftops and filing lawsuits. Nothing from Mitch.

    So to say Mitch is cleared of all of this by virtue of OFA’s strong performance is unreasonable.

    Nick Steffens


    He claims to have helped organize phone banking, efforts to drive voters to the polls and chase absentee ballots, in addition to handing out hundreds of thousands of party palm cards. This is what he claims.

    He surely had a role, along with hundreds of others. How big that role was and whether he did enough is up to DEC members to decide.

    However as I wrote, the victory of Obama removed an shortcoming that could have been pointed at and could have converted votes to your side.

    As far as Alex Sink goes, she ran a lousy campaign. You can’t blame Caesar for that. Florida Trend just this month calls her campaign “lackluster” and states “MSNBC branded her the year’s worst candidate.” That’s MSNBC, not me.

    I am not withdrawing my criticism of the party organization that I’ve written here many times. In that, you have an issue. The organization needs a much bigger Internet effort, with constantly updated Twitter, Facebook and a decent website. Ceasar is a good spokesman for the party, but he needs to get out front and comment on a whole range of issues that are ignored by him, maybe because he doesn’t want to offend office holders. Ceasar needs to solicit advice from office holders on how he can improve the party, since they know how to win an election. Ceasar needs to institute a rule that DEC members must work their precincts. Ceasar needs to be more imaginative about raising money, although I can’t see anyone on the Progressive’s side with fund raising abilities. I could go on and on.

    I don’t know about Ceasar’s conduct concerning women, but allegations are just that….allegations. I am dubious about at least one of the women because she was represented legally by a guy who ran against Ceasar for chair and continues to oppose him on the DEC.

    Have your election and whoever wins has a tough job. After the election, the party needs to get over its differences and prepare for Rick Scott in two years. It will be much tougher and a house divided against itself can not stand. A Republican said that, but the Broward DEC should take it to heart.

  4. Elroy John says:

    “This time no sensible person can argue about Ceasar’s role. He did what Democratic activists are supposed to do – help win elections.”

    I think the Chairman’s role is exactly what needs to be debated. You imply that his responsibility encompasses activism. If so, to what extent do you assert he achieved that (i.e., how many canvass efforts did he oversee/organize, how many new Dem candidates did he mentor through their first run, how much space did he provide for phone banks, how many GOTV meetings did he hold with individual clubs, when did he produce a codified strategy for the 2012 cycle and when/how was it implemented, how much funds did he supply to facilitate grassroots efforts by local clubs, how much did he work to diversify our local party to keep pace with regional demographics, etc)?

    I am asking because I and many of the other activists I know reported to OFA offices regularly to obtain walk lists, work predictive dialers, catch up with current strategy, etc. If the Chairman’s efforts were mostly as a key partner to that organizations efforts are you suggesting he has no responsibility to provide evidence of that in the course of his re-election effort? We should simply ignore the President’s coattails and the efficiency of the organization that HE put together in our state and county?

    I honestly have no personal issue with the Chairman, but there have been dictators that haven’t reigned as long as he has presided over the county party. We will soon enter a mid-term cycle where there will be no over-arching OFA support and the party’s mettle will once again be tested. Based on the results of the last mid-term election, I am not sure how you arrive at the pass you seem to be giving the party with this article.

  5. ellen moltz says:

    Congratulations to the Plantation Democratic Club for their hard work at the Plantation Library. They coordinated all the volunteers and assisted eveyone who came to vote. Many people now want to join the club.
    Well Done!

  6. Michael G. Ahearn, Esq says:

    Thank for the props Mr. Mucho.

    No can do, I have been a Democrat since the day I turned 18. No flip flopping parties to whatever way the wind blows for me.

    The Democrats may sometimes put the “D” in disfunctional, but when they come together great things can be accomplished.

  7. Creekgirl says:

    Buddy, you wrote two OFA workers knocked on your door and asked you to vote Democratic but in a previous post it was mentioned you recently became a Republican. Is your house divided politically? Just curious.

  8. Fail Ceasar! says:

    Buddy, you need to answer the same question that Fred Sanford often asked his son Lamont… ARE YOU CRAZY???

    Ceasar has raised money from a costly sit-down dinner and used it to print up palm cards. Every county party organization does exactly the same thing every year. The only amazing part is that Buddy finds this to be impressive. Maybe Buddy should travel more. The Pinellas County Democratic Party does all that AND runs an excellent free training program for prospective candidates (“Candidate’s Boot Camp”), basically teaching them how to run a campaign and win. Ceasar does nothing of the sort – he wants candidates to shovel their $$$ into the wallets of his pals, the campaign consultants. To this bare-minimum level of activity, Ceasar adds some TV and radio spokesperson work, also par for the course, though he does more of it and on bigger media channels.

    All the criticism of the past – his alleged sexual harassment of employees, his abuse of the bylaws to deprive everyone else of any voice in the organization, his complete lack of ethics and willingness to commit election “irregularities” to preserve his grip on power, his talent for disgusting and repelling Democratic activists – type “Ceasar” into the Broward Beat search box to pull up all the details – all of that is still completely valid. Ceasar has done absolutely nothing to redeem himself.

    As usual, Ceasar has packed and stacked the precinct captain slots with his supporters (most of whom do very little or nothing in the way of actual work on behalf of Democratic candidates), while genuine and hardworking Democratic activists either flee to the Obama for America organization or to one of the progressive activist groups organized by real Democrats like Phil Busey, Cynthia Busch, and Randy Fleischer. Those organizations, which exist not because of Ceasar but despite him, are the ones that ran a powerful ground game in Broward County. Crediting Ceasar for that, or making mealy-mouthed claims that Ceasar should get credit for it (as if his contributions were not absolutely overwhelmed by all of his malfeasance), is outrageous.

    We all know what will happen. Ceasar will be re-elected by his carefully stuffed hand-picked group of pals, and the vote-counting will be rigged and wholly non-transparent just to make sure nobody else can possibly win. That isn’t surprising. What is surprising is that Buddy is still naive enough to swallow Mitch Ceasar’s self-serving bullshit.


    I don’t find much impressive in the Broward DEC.

    I’ve been around politics maybe longer than you’ve been alive. My grandfather was a Tammany Hall assemblyman from New York City–A Democrat. My grandmother was the leader of a huge Democratic club in the city.

    What I wrote is that Obama’s victory removed a major issue that could have been used against Ceasar. Read my comments to Nick Steffens for my list of a few of the many shortcomings I find about the local party.

  9. Mr. Mucho says:

    Broward is ready to move on from the mistake of Richard DeNapoli. I understand at least 3 people are ready to run for Chair. Question is – what will happen to Richard Nixon DeNapoli???
    I am sure DeNapoli is trying to frame BS reasons why he sucked. He’d be respected more if he just told everyone he laid an egg.

  10. John Fusaro says:

    Why would Mitch Caesar feel like a big winner in Broward? The Democrats out number the Republicans and Independents combined. I don’t understand why Mitch would consider himself a big winner. The Floridian’s where the real winners. The extremists whom cause the bulk of our problems where voted out on Tuesday. People like West and Bogdanoff. The real problem for American’s could be the increase in Republican Governor Positions which means that 30 states will not see the Presidents Health Care system enacted.

  11. Randy A. Fleischer, Esq. says:

    Mitch Ceasar has been taking credit, but the reality is that most of his DEC precinct people did little or nothing to win this election. As a member of the DEC Management I can tell you that Ceasar had meetings where nothing was accomplished. Putting out a plan just before absentee ballots went out and implementing that plan are very different. I received little guidance and no help from the DEC. Fortunately I put together an army – the Davie Dem Club – which did remarkable work. We had t-shirts,distributed 30,000 of our own palm cards, completely staffed early voting polls 2-3 deep at all times, and worked all of the bigger polls on election day. This is a new club with over 70 members since starting last April that Ceasar refuses to recognize or charter. The ground game was led by OFA – thank G-d for Cynthia Busch, Alan Ehrlich and the rest of the OFA leadership, they have been working Broward for 5 years. They are the reason Obama had a 258,000 vote margin of victory. Ceasar taking credit is like Buddy calling himself a journalist!


    Read the piece, Randy. I said Obama’s victory removed a big reason that the Progressives would have to topple him. It would have been much easier to beat him if Obama did poorly in Broward.

    Let me make this clear again: I find many problems with the Broward DEC, some of which I outlined in answer to another comment.

    Maybe you and the others have the answers. Maybe you don’t That’s up to the DEC to decide next month.

    Let me add, your new club is a great achievement. Any activism helps. If you can beat Ceasar, do it.

    I don’t call myself a journalist. Others did, including the people who for more than 40 years paid me good money to write and continue to do so.

  12. Ralph Rickel says:





















    FROM BUDDY: The palm card was brillant, as I wrote before, and I applaud everybody involved.

  13. Heavy D says:

    I am a 1st time precinct committeeman who got involved BECAUSE of Broward Blues not Ceasar or the DEC. I handed out palm cards not because Ceasar had them printed but because I was asked to by Broward Blues Members. I staffed GOTV efforts not because of Ceasar but because of OFA. I received a couple of crappy emails from Ceasar during the campaign and that is it. I became involved because I support my President the Party philosophy and despise the Tea Party. What Ceasar has done and continues to do to the Party is sad and should come to and end. It is only a house divided as you call it because of Ceasar. He is clearly NOT a leader that can bring people together.
    Buddy has given him a pass this whole election, maybe he wants Dems to fail.

  14. Dan Lewis says:

    At best, Mitch was a distraction and an annoyance to the many good people working in the Broward democratic election effort. At worst, he used his position as Democratic chair to promote republicans and his personal financial agenda as a lobbyist.

    He will and should have to answer for his conduct very soon to the very people whose hard work he now so arrogantly steals credit.

  15. Randy is it true? says:

    Randy is it true that you claimed the Young Dems Blue Card was illegal at the polls? Interesting from a former YD President. I guess if true then in your world party affiliation gets thrown out when you wanted to help out your friend Julio Gonzalez a Republican not on the card?

  16. Fail Ceasar! says:

    “It would have been much easier to beat him if Obama did poorly in Broward.”


    What part of Ceasar Rigs His Own Elections don’t you understand???


    If the election is rigged, why bother even participating?

  17. Berries Parness says:

    Mitch is a complete failure as a leader. He talks big does little. The victory inBroward County was achieved by people like Cyntha Busch, Rixk Hoye and Maggie McCaulwey,Ann Zucker and many others who have planned and worked for years to win. Mr mitch only claim to the election was a coctail party.He will try to take credit for what others did. He has done that in the past. We will see if he canrun an honest election for officers in December. It is time he stepped down.

  18. Fail Ceasar! says:

    “If the election is rigged, why bother even participating?”

    That is exactly the question that many good Democratic activists have asked as they departed the DEC to join Obama For America, Grassroots Patriots (Phil Busey’s organization), Randy Fleischer’s group, or Cynthia Busch and Alan Ehrlich.

    Ceasar will never be defeated in a Stalinist election (in which one of the candidates is also in charge of the vote-counting process).

    The only way to defeat Ceasar is via a Supervisor Of Elections result – defeating Ceasar in the primary election for both of the precinct captain slots in his precinct.

    That was tried – incompetently – earlier this year. Next chance is August 2016.

  19. Proud GOPer says:

    Maybe Richard Denapoli should spend more time trying to get our Republican leaders elected and less time defending Commissioner Chip LaMarca’s ethical and personal lapses…like Lamarca’s foreclosure on his home in LHPi Ive been a proud Broward Republican my whole life, and I’ve never seen two more arrogant men in my life. Those of us in the trenches can’t wait until they are both history. I doubt it will be long.

  20. AMWakeUpCall says:

    The palm cards were not delivered to precincts for DEC precinct captains to pick up and distribute. The Area Leader for where I live sent out multiple emails telling his precinct captains that they had to drive out to his house to pick them up, but then he complained that few if anybody had done so.

    His solution? He put the entire box of palm cards outside his front door and sent an email saying “Come and get em.'” The result? Someone immediately went out there and took the entire box. No palm cards for anyone.

    Why wasn’t at the very least a messenger service hired to deliver the supplies of palm cards to either the area leaders and/or the precincts? Why was there no budget for that? Why was there no system in place to ensure that the palm cards were delivered to early voting sites- at the very least- for precinct captains to pick up?

    Well, probably because of the Chair, Mitch Ceasar.

    Instead, the plan was to dump the box in front of a house out west of I75. Typical.

    An entire system needs to be developed to ensure that each and every precinct is canvassed, calls are made, and DEC materials are readily available.

    The status quo isn’t good enough, even if it’s like a stopped clock that’s right in a Presidential election.

    With Ceasar in charge, the right-wing backlash and low turnout for the mid-term will clearly demonstrate that he doesn’t really care. Mitch Ceasar totally uninterested in reaching low-information, sporadic voters that would be otherwise likely to vote Democrat. He doesn’t relate to them. He doesn’t reach them. He’s only ever known those elderly super-voters in the condos.

    He’s used to dealing with the reliable voters, not the unreliable.

    The Broward DEC needs a new strategy for getting turnout in each and every election, not just in four-year cycles when there’s a good campaigner on the Democratic ticket. The Broward DEC needs to ensure that its precinct captains can logistically do their jobs and that they understand precisely what needs to be done.

    There needs to be follow-up and verification that the job has been done in each precinct.

    But that is not gonna happen with Mitch Ceasar in charge. In 2014, with the likelihood that he’ll be re-elected as Chair, Broward Democrats are doomed in regards to turnout.

  21. Help Wanted says:

    Still looking for an attorney to sue the young dems and/or dan lewis over their blue card. Willing to buy lunch for you at Mangos.

    Send resume to 808 E. Last Olas Blvd or feel free to call no one answers or calls me back these days so my line is always free.

  22. Ann Zucker says:

    If being part of a team makes you a big winner, then the Weston Democratic Club was an enormous winner this Presidential election. While OFA was canvassing to get out the vote, it was the Weston Democratic Club that had complete responsibility for the voters during early voting and later on Election Day. We had our own palm cards printed because our city candidate was not represented on either of the other cards and it was our members who worked the lines from early morning till late in the evening for the entire Democratic ticket. The DEC had nothing at all to do with voting out here. Once again if being part of a team makes you a big winner, then that kudos needs to go to the Weston Democratic Club because along with OFA, in Weston we WERE the team!!!!!

  23. New D says:

    Nobody here is defending Mitch Ceasar. Is that illustrative of his real support?

  24. Catherine Leisek says:

    Although a precinct captain my success as an activist and a volunteer was due to Randy, Phil , Cynthia, the Davie Democratic Club,the OFA office,the AFLCIO , the AFT, the FEA, and Educators for Obama, sponsored by the NEA. They all came through for me…. The DEC did not left a finger other than a few uninformative emails. When the office was called, the mailboxes were full, when I twice tried to pick up palm cards the offices were closed. Thank you for all the support of the above mentioned individuals and organizations who provided me with the information and resources that created this Florida success story. A big thank you to those who just called me or showed up or answered my calls and emails for assistance.

  25. Crabgretch says:

    After reading your review of President Obama’s victory, I said to myself, “What planet is Buddy living on?” You are so far off base, it is laughable. Let me state some facts that you should know.

    Cynthia Busch, Area Leader and President of the Plantation Dems, and super volunteer Alan Ehrlich, and the OFA organized the ground plan to re-elect Obama months before Ceasar moved a muscle.
    I, along with many super democrats volunteered with Alan registering voters week after week until the last day to register. Then we started canvassing door to door week after week right up to Monday, November 5, 2012. Ceasar, as usual, remained invisible.

  26. Maggie Macaulay says:

    We won this election in spite of the DEC. We won because of the incredible work of OFA. We won because Cynthia Busch stepped up and inspired others to do the same. We won because Democratic Clubs – independent of any guidance from the DEC – jumped into action. We won because Democrats – devoted to our President and committed to vital issues – volunteered. We won because voters stayed in long lines to exercise their right to vote.

    As a club president and precinct committee captain, I have received no guidance from the DEC. In fact, not even a single e-mail in over three years. Either Mitch does not have the savvy to fix the e-mail distribution problem or does not care to do so in spite of countless requests from me asking for communication. The sole communication I had from my DEC Area Leader during the entire election cycle was a text 3 days before the election asking if I had “contacted all the Dems” in my precinct. With no direction from the DEC, the Miramar Democratic Club had been canvassing for a year to register voters to vote by mail. The MDC manned the polls tirelessly from 6:45 a.m. until every voter had entered the building, sometimes at 9 or 10 p.m. during Early Voting and on Election Day.

    On Election Day, I was called by the DEC to handle a problem with a potentially lost vote at the polls. Why was there no procedure in place in the DEC office to handle important problems like this directly knowing that voter suppression efforts were in full force and problems were likely to occur?

    In the closing weeks prior to the election, Mitch made time to meet with a precinct committee person in my club. Instead of talking about getting out the vote, Mitch complained about those who had stepped up to fill the leadership void. Much to the discomfort of my club member, Mitch maligned me. Politicking for his own re-election rather than the President’s during the election cycle and maligning an active club president is not leadership.

    During the time leading up to the election and on Election Day, Cynthia Busch provided a plan, encouragement, organization, clear communication, and team.

    Imagine how Broward will look in 2014 with real leadership.

  27. Consultant says:

    21…filing a frivolous lawsuit just because your judicial candidate lost is nothing more than sour grapes. Bottom line,YD card was truthfull. Further, Mitch did recognize the card. Last, where was Mitch when Democrats were passing out fake cards designed for democrats listing republicans? Many Democrats voted these cards thinking they were voting for democrats. Failure by the Democratic leadrship to control this type of conduct is very dangerous.

  28. Real Leadership says:

    “Imagine how Broward will look in 2014 with real leadership.”

    Cynthia Busch already IS the “real leadership”!

    Mitch Ceasar can rig elections and pretend to be important all he wants, but we know who the REAL leader of Broward Democrats is – Cynthia Busch. She (not Mitch) will defeat the Republicans in 2014.

  29. Consultant seems confused says:

    What part of “non-partisan” do you not understand? Florida law says that it is illegal to identify a judicial candidate by their political party. Period. Voters are not allowed to know whether they are voting for a D or R…just the candidate. I’ve heard the absurd argument that this is a free speech issue and that the law could be challenged as unconstitutional. Is that really what we are shooting for here folks? A judge that refuses to follow a clear law because they think the law is vulnerable to an attack? If you want to say the Blue Card was brilliant because it successfully circumvented the law…fine. But to suggest for a minute that openly identifying the party affiliation of a judicial candidate is not illegal is ignorant. And the fact that a journalist would openly applaud such tactics is, shall we say, curious.

  30. donny says:

    27. Can you give more info on what this is all about?

  31. jane says:

    AM Wake Up Call – there is only 1 DEC Area Leader who lives west of I75 and it is a she, not a he.

  32. Maggie Macaulay says:

    28. I agree that Cynthia IS real leadership. I was saying how amazing it will be with real leadership at the helm of the DEC.

  33. kathyrichards says:

    I agree with just about everything wote on your blog.I have never done this before but feel there is much more to be said.Were people afraid to speak the truth ?
    Mr. Ceasar did not win this election,as he was too busy sitting on his emperial throne,sending hundreds os letters to the newly elected committee people to come to his DEC meeting to try to charm them to vote for him in December.Where did all that money come from?True,some of our elected officials gave him rather large sums of money,but there has not been any accountability from the DEC in many years.He has called
    many of the newly elected to his office to try to recruit them for his election.Quite frankly, Mr. Ceasar has actually been trying to get himself elected..Not President Obama.On Primary day, there are pictures of him with his wife holding signs that said vote for Mitch.While he was doing that hundreds of OFA volunteers were busy making phone calls and knocking on doors to get people to the polls (after the volunteers vote were cast).After all, Mr. Ceasar needed to be elected otherwise he would be ineligible to run for chairman..tsk.tsk.The Obama people never knew what was going on behind the scenes.Some of them were informed but turned a deaf ear.All they really wanted was numbers and results.Well, they got what they wanted,but it was not from Hail Ceasar, it was from the hundreds of volunteers who gave up everything day and night to win this election.Those are the people who won this county.Broward county needs leadership and change.
    we need accountability,integrity,
    transparency,and honesty so that the little people will no longer be afraid of intimidation and harrassment.We need a leader to lead!

  34. Patti Lynn says:

    If Mr. Ceasar was a true leader, he would immediately resign and assist the DEC in electing Cynthia Busch. His lobbying contacts are more important to him than democratic victories. President Obama should give awards to several Broward activists who DELIVERED the vote, in spite of mr. Ceasar: Cynthia Busch; Phil Busey; Randy Fleisher; Alan Ehrlich; Maggie Macauley; Ann Zucker; Dan Lewis, and the entire OFA Organization.
    Buddy, Mitch Ceasar is trying to cash in on the work of some very dedicated people. If they worked less than 18 hours a day, it must have been due to a family emergency. Those people that I mentioned, (along with some that I probably forgot), are the true Democrratic leaders in Brward County. Mitch Ceasar needs to resign.

  35. Law says:

    Judicial Campaigns and Elections: Florida

    Campaign Conduct

    According to Canon 7 of Florida’s code of judicial conduct, judicial candidates shall not:
    With respect to parties or classes of parties, cases, controversies, or issues that are likely to come before the court, make pledges, promises, or commitments that are inconsistent with the impartial performance of the adjudicative duties of the office.
    Knowingly misrepresent the identity, qualifications, present position, or other fact concerning themselves or their opponents.
    While a proceeding is pending or impending in any court, make any public comment that might reasonably be expected to affect its outcome or impair its fairness or make any nonpublic comment that might substantially interfere with a fair trial or hearing.
    Personally solicit campaign contributions or solicit attorneys for publicly stated support. However, candidates may establish campaign committees to secure and manage campaign funds and obtain public statements of support.
    Judicial candidates standing for retention may engage in only limited campaign activities until they certify that their candidacy has drawn active opposition.

    In 1990, a federal district court declared unconstitutional a provision of the code of judicial conduct that barred judicial candidates from announcing their views on disputed legal or political issues. The court nevertheless acknowledged the state’s interest in preserving the integrity and objectivity of its judiciary. American Civil Liberties Union v. The Florida Bar, 744 F.Supp. 1094 (N.D. Fla. 1990). In 1995, another code provision was challenged by the ACLU and struck down by a federal court. The impugned rule had prohibited judicial candidates from expending funds for their campaigns or establishing committees to solicit contributions and support earlier than one year before the general election. Zeller v. The Florida Bar and the Florida Judicial Qualifications Commission, 909 F.Supp. 1518 (N.D. Fla. 1995). Under Florida law, judicial candidates shall not campaign as a member of a political party or accept contributions from a political party. In 1978, a federal district court struck down as a violation of the First Amendment a statute that barred political parties from supporting, endorsing, or assisting judicial candidates. Concerned Democrats of Florida v. Reno, 458 F.Supp. 60 (S.D. Fla. 1978).

    Clearly it must be proved that a Judicial candidate directly had involvement in the creation of any palm card clearly indicating their party affiliation. Obviously a Candidates campaign manager creating such a card with the candidates knowledge would be a violation of canon 7.

    I’m curious as to what law prohibits any organization, political or otherwise, that directly prohibits others from stating the political party of a judicial candidate.

  36. Real Leadership says:

    @ 32: You are assuming, incorrectly, that there will be a free and fair election for DEC chair! But Mitch Ceasar routinely abuses his position to both stack the electorate (packing the precinct captain slots with his hand-picked allies who mostly do nothing to help any Democrat get elected other than Mitch Ceasar) and to count the votes in an egregiously non-transparent and irregular way. Mitch will be “re-elected” and all the ballots will immediately disappear without a trace.

    In other words, given the dysfunctional election system, there is exactly ZERO chance of having any “real leadership at the helm of the DEC” in 2014.

    For more details on how Ceasar rigs his own elections, click the link below:

  37. Judge Spin Doctor says:

    How sad that a newly elected judge would dance around a clear law with smoke and mirrors to justify misconduct. Here is how unmistakenly clear this law is:
    (A) Florida Statute 105.071 says that a candidate for judicial office shall NOT publically represent herself as a member of any political party.
    (B) Canon 7 says that a judicial candidate is directly responsible for the actions of their workers just as if she had done the act herself.
    Sooooo…’s how this played out:
    (A) the Blue Card clearly represented both Watson and Levine as “Democrats”;
    (B) Watson’s workers (and probably others) who wore her official campaign shirts handed these cards to voters at polling cites.
    Forget all the smoke and mirros above…it’s really that simple. The issue is that it is both illegal to produce the card AND to hand it out.
    The law is crystal clear…as opposed to the irrelevant distraction cases cited above. How sad is it that a future judge is already using the law she is sworn to uphold as a mechanism to confuse the public. Sometimes you really do get what you pay for.

  38. Ughhh says:

    Judy most likely “Judge Spin Doctor” it is over, Julio is done. Nice of you to throw Levine under the bus.

    Julio is a lawyer or Carlos Reyes, maybe attorney Izqueerdo can file suit.

    Another suggestion maybe you should try to figure out how Watson won Eggelletion country aka Lauderhill and Lauderdale Lakes. Then maybe you could figure out how Watson won Chris Smith/Helen Hinton/Perry Thurston country in NW Fort Lauderdale when Julio was on all the voter cards in these areas.

  39. OFA - Here To Stay!!! says:

    Florida Democrats turn their sights to defeating Rick Scott
    By Ernest Hooper, Metro Columnist
    In Print: Monday, November 12, 2012

    The Democratic National Committee’s ground game, Organizing For America, received a lot of credit for getting out the vote in Florida. But OFA is not done yet in the state.

    The group will now turn its attention to defeating Gov. Rick Scott in 2014. It already has held events to thank supporters and build enthusiasm for a defeat-Scott campaign. […]

  40. ChangeNeeded says:

    Bottom Line: If Mitch had been doing his job, Rick Scott would not be the governor.
    I am afraid that many precinct captains were pawns put in place to vote for Mitch, not help the party as they were invisible this election cycle.

  41. marlin mike says:


  42. Rick Hoye says:

    In regard to leadership, what is it and what should we expect from our leaders? While in JROTC, I was told: “Leadership may be defined as the art, science, or gift by which a person is enabled and privileged to direct the thoughts, plans, and actions of others in such a manner as to obtain and command their obedience, their confidence, their respect, and their loyal cooperation.”

    As we move towards 2014 and the midterms, we need to evaluate what we would like to see in terms of the leadership rather than settle for a structure that is deeply flawed and ineffective. A party leader can’t just be a party spokesperson. We need leadership that fosters grassroots efforts and motivates activists to go the extra mile and understands the importance of delegating and holding others accountable by clearly defined duties. Indeed, we as a party will be stronger if collectively we know what are roles are and what is expected of all us. For example, BYD composed a field plan and held weekly campaign meetings each week without fail from late August until Election Day, with clearly defined responsibilities, goals and a voter education campaign for our leadership and rank and file members.

    Congratulations to Maggie Macaulay, Randy Fleischer, Bernie Parness, Ann Zucker, Connie Lynd, Ken Evans, Marsha Smith, Ellie Moltz and Betty DiMaio. Last, but certainly not least, Alan Eirlich and Cynthia Busch did a tremendous job in Plantation which served as a model for many of us in the county. I am proud to say that many Young Democrats answered the call to action by running for precinct committee posts throughout the party and campaigning for two years on many successful races and initiatives around the county. Commissioner Wayne Messam of Miramar, Rep. Elect, Shevrin Jones, Whitney Rawls and Rep. Gwen Clarke-Reed did a great job of tapping individuals to pitch in where possible, organizing watch parties to recruit volunteers and leading the Caravan to the Polls and Souls to the Polls effort to push early-vote turnout which was highly successful! It’s a good start, but we need to do a great deal more to reinvigorate and expand our base in Broward to increase our turnout percentages.

    Many Democrats in Broward do not have the slightest idea as to what entities exist to perform effective grassroots activities or what a good one should even resemble. One reason we had to fight to earn the trust of OFA in grassroots strategy was the reality that Broward is known in the upper ranks of the party for having undesirable conditions for which to launch a powerful operation in what is the stronghold of Democratic voters in our state. We have to EARN our influence by reasserting dominance. We should take full account of where OFA succeeded, as well as where they could have performed better to improve our ground game.

    The Party and its various affiliates need to do a MUCH better job of reaching out to young people, minorities, and any other demographic that will propel Democrats to meaningful victories not just in Broward where it’s expected, but statewide. We need a clear plan of action for the next four years to be executed and modified to reflect challenges and achievements along the way. We need a full scale program to recruit and train young Dems to be party leaders, issue activists and candidates. We also we need to take a much more aggressive stance in initiating action as it pertains to ballot initiatives, voting rights, etc., to avoid always having to react to things that come down from Republicans in Tallahassee.

    It’s our responsibility to organize GOTV efforts and funding to assist our candidates and elected officials. Effective grassroots mobilization is vital in any election and 2010 was a blaring example of what a lack thereof can do to damage to the public. We failed as a party and got Rick Scott as a result. The local party must make an honest effort to recruit new members to refresh and modernize the presentation, field plan and makeup of party activists.

    Rick Hoye
    Broward Young Democrats

  43. Broward Watcher says:

    There are many things stated I do agree with, but there are a few poeple on here who like to make people think they do so much more than they do, like Ann Zucker and Randy Fleicher.

    Ann Zucker does nothing but run her big nasty mouth and talk trash about people. She is a sneak and does everything to hurt the Dem. Party, so she has np room to talk.

    Randy Fleischer is another big mouth that tries to make a big deal out of everything he does and more people run from him because of his arrogance and shitty personality.

    You know what I say, just like you Buddy, Hey Randy and Ann, if you have so much juice, why don’t you get Ceasar out??? You know why, because between teh two of you you can’t get 10 people to follow you. Look at the West Dem meetings, same 8 people every meeting.

    These two aren’t even in the same league as Phil Busey, Rick Hoye, Maggie Mccauley, BYD’s and a bunch more.

    The party would be better if we had better club President’s and got rid of the mal contents like Ann, Randy and a few others. Nobody wants to take part with club presidents like Ann and Randy that are always pushing their own personal agendas.

    These two violate their oath’s constantly….. You are both hypocrits, live in glass houses and throw stones!!! You cost my friend Franlklin his race…

  44. It's Time! says:

    I see this Patti Lynn on these blogs always running her mouth. She is another one that is nasty and runs her big mouth and tries to make everyone think she is doing so much, but you never see her anywhere. There is a group filing an ethics complaint against Patti Lynn and Beth Lerner for violating there 501(3)(c)’s with their illegal engagement into politics while reprenting their organizations and lying throughout the election cycle. Finally, this is a start to getting rid of some of the poision out there.

  45. Renee Pera says:

    Its way past time for Ceasar to retire. Everyone knows what happened 4 years ago, the ballots mysteriously disappeared (yeah right)- THAT is why Ceasar is still in his position. Under the current DEC leadership, the organization is almost useless when it comes to getting people elected. Time for new leadership in Broward County Democratic politics.

  46. Go Cynthia Busch! says:

    Grass Roots Organizer Announces Bid For Democratic Chair Position
    Date posted: November 19, 2012
    By: Sharon Aron Baron

    Community organizer and Democratic Area leader Cynthia Busch has formally announced today that she will be a candidate for Chair of the Broward County Democratic Executive Committee.

     She will face Mitch Ceasar, who has been the Party Chair since 1988.

    Although President Obama won his reelection, many Broward Democrats believe it was a result of the work of Organizing for America including activists such as Busch, not because of Mitch Ceasar.

    “Working with Cynthia Busch has been an eyeopening experience,” said Weston Democratic Leader Ann Zucker. “Her organizational skills are second to none.” Zucker said Busch was directly responsible for all of the volunteers that were organized that got the President and other Democrats elected in Broward County.

    This past spring, Busch and other activists formed Team Broward as a response to the lack of activism of the local Democratic Party and to bridge the gap between Organizing for America (OFA) volunteers and the local party. They spearheaded a successful effort to enroll Democratic voters to vote absentee.

    “The current, formal Democratic Party in Broward is nothing more than a coffee and cake club,” said former School Board Candidate Nick Steffens.  ”We need a leader that will activate the grassroots members of our party to work for our candidates across the county. “Mitch Ceasar has never shown any interest in that critical part of running a county party and Cynthia Busch is a fantastic grassroots leader.”

    Busch was inspired into politics after the 2000 election debacle between Bush and Gore, she went on to become a volunteer for the John Kerry campaign in 2004. In 2006 she volunteered for Jim Davis for Governor and Ron Klein first congressional run. During that campaign she was surprised by the lack of activism of the local party. Through her volunteer work she met other Plantation Democratic Committee members and joined the Plantation Democratic Club in 2006.

    In 2008 she ran for her precinct because she felt that there was a need for younger and more active volunteers to take on these positions.

    Because of her volunteer involvement and work ethic she was asked to be a neighborhood team leader in Plantation for President Obama’s first Presidential run. She attended the 2008 DEC election in August and witnessed a chaotic and disorganized process. She decided then to run for the Area Leader because it was apparent to her that the Party needed to bring energy and activism of the Obama campaign to the DEC.

    Over her four years as Area Leader she worked to bring precinct people together in Plantation. At the same time she was asked to help then President Obama as a Community Organizer doing outreach on behalf of his healthcare reform agenda, Wall Street reform. She organized volunteer teams and strategy sessions on their behalf for the 2010 election cycle. She gave birth to her second child Caryn during that summer but kept volunteering in West Broward – organizing teams on behalf of OFA for Sunrise, Davie and Plantation. Cynthia was also hired as a Field Staff for the OFA coordinated campaign.

    This year, in response to lack of activism and desire to increase diversity of the local Democratic Party, Cynthia spearheaded an effort to recruit volunteers to run for Precinct positions. This resulted in over 400 activists filing for positions. She financed and led the effort for those who had competition, winning over 65% of the contested races. She won her own precinct with over 70% of the vote.

    Since only precinct captains can vote in the upcoming elections, those that were inspired to run for precinct positions by Busch and her volunteers will more than likely support her efforts.

    On the other side, to prevent himself from being voted out, Ceasar appointed many precinct captains himself

    The election has been tentatively scheduled for December 9. There has been no announcement of a time and place.

    “Our party failed in 2010.” Said Busch, “ Our volunteers lacked coordinated leadership and support from the current DEC Chairman. Our future as a state and a people took a severe hit. This cannot happen again.”

  47. Bernie Parness says:

    I call him Mitt Caeser as he was the Republicans best friend during this November 6th election. For three years and eleven months he did nothing to help Democrats He should be removed by the State Party as being a fraudulant leader. A leader leads by example. If we followed his lead we would have done nothing to help Democrats get elected. Ofa and grass roots organiations helped win this election and got the vote out while Mitt the Caeser did nothing. That is why I support a real leader Cynthia Busch.

  48. Dan says:

    Um, yeah. cynthia Busch was a PAID OFA organizer. Which means she didn’t volunteer. And per the poorly written fluff piece on Tamarac Talk – she hasn’t even been involved for 10 years. Once the paycheck stops how do we know her commitment won’t?

  49. Da Fundz says:

    Getting paid to organize by OFA doesn’t create a conflict of interest, so Cynthia Busch is A-OK. Getting paid to lobby by special interests DOES create a conflict of interest, so Mitch Ceasar is undesirable.

    Also, nobody can plausibly claim that Cynthia Busch hasn’t done an absolutely fantastic job. Virtually everyone can and does plausibly claim that Mitch is a disaster.

  50. S says:


    Clearly you are ill informed and misguided.

    Cynthia was hired by OFA in a past election cycle not the 2012 campaign.

    I might add, the hours worked versus the pay was a win for OFA. Plus, she of course did her normal, all out DEC efforts (someone had to).

    In fact, I doubt the “pay” covered the cost of the babysitters, paper, ink, stamps, gas etc etc etc etc.

    Get a clue. Get rid of Mitch if you ever want to see a Democrat in the Governor’s office.

    Cynthia has, and will, work extremely hard for the party.

    I might say she (and perhaps others as a group) was the De facto chair in 2012 given the time spent organizing GOTV, bringing together OFA, DEC volunteers, et al, opening her house to daily phone banks and door knocking efforts (because, of course, the actual DEC office is not open for business most days, especially during an election) and assisting multiple other leaders and campaigns in their own efforts.

    When, if ever has Mitch done that?

    I know how hard she works (for free, and at personal and monetary expense) for the local party. If you don’t, then you were likely not very involved beyond your own personal interests.

    I know she will make an excellent DEC Chair, even if I would prefer she get paid a lot of money to assist individual campaigns instead (so I can retire).

    I know, because I am her husband and support her completely in this effort. You should too if you care about your Party first.

  51. THE EX says:

    Question to all DEC members. How much in campaign donations have Mitch Ceasar raised during this election cycle for the Broward Democratic Executive Committee in 2012 vs. how much campaign donations did Cynthiq Busch bring in.

    While I salute all of the Democrats who have worked very hard to GOTV in Broward, you all have truly made Obama’s re-election possible, one cannot bring only 2012 election “deeds” to the table. I will refer to the old saying “one cannot live on bread alone”, Political organizations cannot survive without grassroots activism. They also cannot survive without funding.

    So, who has raised the most funds this election cycle for the Broward DEC?

  52. ChangeNeeded says:

    Cynthia is the future. She knows what it takes to organize effectively, to get people to the polls and how to chase every vote. The DEC needs the energy that Cynthia will provide. Lackluster leadership in Broward allowed Rick Scott to win in ’10. New blood is needed.

  53. Da Fundz says:

    @ The Ex – why would Ceasar’s opponents ever raise a single penny for the DEC, given that Ceasar is the only one who decides how to spend it?!? Are you crazy?!?

    Cynthia Busch inspired Broward Democrats to give way, way more money to the Obama For America campaign. When Ceasar is ousted, she will very easily outraise Ceasar.

  54. S says:

    It is the Chair’s job to raise funds not the area leaders or precinct people or volunteers. But you bring up a good issue. I can say that because of Cynthia and her associated groups, money or supplies were donated way way outside of Mitch – for good reason.

    How much did Mitch raise? Not much apparently as the food at the election watch party consisted of potato chips and yucky dip for all the volunteers that showed up after working hard all day to get out the vote. And the water bottles, paper and ink for maps and walk lists etc. were paid NOT by Mitch or the DEC and so much more.

    Didn’t Mitch have a last minute, 5 point bumper sticker and yard sign plan with 3 other points open to what ifs and only if he can raise some money? Did anyone get any bumper stickers or yard signs from his Chairmanship? He couldn’t even raise the money for bumper stickers and yards signs?!?

    I know as I had to buy a couple hundred dollars’ worth of yard signs to hand out to all of the people his 5 point plan failed to reach. I could have bought hundreds ore and handed them out but hey, that was his job.

    But, really, the more important question you should ask is how many potential donors by-pass Mitch and the Broward DEC for lack of trust or otherwise?

    Answer: quite a few from my conversations.

    Another question might be: What is the “power grab” he is quoted as saying in response to Cynthia’s candidacy? After all, it is a NON-PAID, VOLUNTEER position that is simply supposed to help elect Democrats.

    If he is wielding some “power”, or thinks he is, it is time for him to be unplugged.

    And it is long past time for you and others to ask “what power?”

    So please, if Mitch wants you to ask questions for him, or spread silly “what ifs” then at least have them apply to the situation.

  55. Da Fundz says:

    The Broward Democratic Party will be holding their re-organizational meeting on Sunday, December 9th.  The doors open at 12:30pm and the elections start at 1:30pm.  The elections will be held at Diamante’s Convention Center, which is located at:

    6501 West Commercial Boulevard
    Fort Lauderdale, FL 33319

  56. S says:

    A lot is said of what Mitch Ceasar brings to the DEC. Much of the alleged facts are simply uninformed opinions.

    Only one thing can be verified and quantified – the amount of money raised and the amount spent by Mitch’s DEC on GOTV.

    It would appear no one has bothered to look until now

    Take a guess what was spent by Mitch via the DEC in 2010 & 2012??

    Take a guess how much he raised for those two elections? Hint: not well over a million!

    The answers will be posted later today.

    Buddy can email me for the scoop.

    The curtain is about to be pulled back and the Emperor has no clothes.