Ferre: Investigate Broward Judicial Appts.


Democratic U. S. Senate candidate Maurice Ferre has called for an investigation into charges that scamster Scott Rothstein traded campaign contributions for Broward judicial appointments.

“State campaign finance records show a troubling pattern of large contributions from Mr. Rothstein and immediate and subsequent appointments of Judges to the Fourth District Court of Appeals,” said Ferre, a former six-term mayor of Miami. “Is this pattern a coincidence? Could it indicate real corruption in the Judicial nominating process and raise legitimate questions about a possibility of Crist’s integrity and his fitness to govern?”

Browardbeat.com broke the statewide story about Rothstein’s contributions on Nov. 18.  Here it is.

The rest of Ferre’s news release states:

Now defunct law firm Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler gave $52,000 to the Republican Party of Florida on July 28, 2008, the same day that Crist appointed Jay Hurley to the Broward County court. One day later, Rothstein’s firm donated another $25,000 to the RPOF.

Crist appointed Rothstein to the 4th DCA Judicial nominating commission on August 25, 2008, four days before Rothstein contributed $140,000 to the RPOF.

Rothstein and his firm gave $100,000 to the RPOF on January 26, 2009. Crist appointed Judges Carlos Rodriguez and Barbara McCarthy two days later.

Additional questions must be asked about Crist’s appointment of Spencer Levine to an appellate judgeship in the 4th circuit. Levine served as North Broward Hospital District CEO prior to his judicial appointment on April 7, 2009. Rothstein sought legal work from Levine and the Hospital district and pushed Levine’s appointment even though Levine had no previous judicial experience, according to the Broward New Times.[ii]Rothstein reportedly once said, “I’m on the Judicial Nominating Committee, and I got Spencer in my pocket.”

“Are all these incidents just coincidence?” asked Ferre.

“Perhaps the U.S. Attorney’s investigation into corruption in South Florida should be expanded to include the Governor’s possible auctioning of judicial appointments in Broward County. We need to know what Charlie Crist knew and when he knew it,” said Ferre.

“Florida needs a strong representative in the U.S. Senate – one that will stand up, rather than pander, to special interests. Most important, Florida needs to continue its record of unquestioned integrity in our U.S. Senators.” Ferre said.

14 Responses to “Ferre: Investigate Broward Judicial Appts.”

  1. Angry Taxpayer says:

    After reading this article, and your previous report, I find it very ironic that our Governor is currently petitioning the Florida Supreme Court to investigate corruption. Might he be trying to take the attention off himself? Ferre is right, there should be a thorough investigation.

    And the Broward County Commission should have their heads examinied if they award any affiliates of Rothstein a contract, paid for with our hard earned taxes. The full investigation should be completed first, which should be just in time for the following 3 year contract.

    These commissioners were elected to be stewards of our precious and limited tax dollars. Not for paybacks to contributors of campaign funds. It’s not as if they don’t know the affiliation exists. They should be removed for even considering it. Maybe they will, depending on what the investigation uncovers. They are just adding fuel to the fire. How unfortuante for them.

  2. One Candidate Not Tainted says:

    Buddy –

    While I don’t think that any of these judges were involved with Rothstein or got appointed based on his money, this story plays into the perception out in the community that judges, whether elected or appointed, are tainted by money coming from lawyers.

    You said it best when you wrote last month about a candidate who decided to forgo money from the lawyers that would appear in front of him if elected — “I have always found it shameful that judicial candidates take money from lawyers who appear in front of them.”

    What’s being talked about here with Scotty Rothstein, who sat on a Judicial Nominating Committee, is just more of the same.

    The only way this system changes is with people who aren’t willing to play the same games.

    Vote out those who are part of the old guard and try to find some folks out there who won’t take the dirty money or make the backroom deals.

    This is OUR COUNTY. Take it back from the Rothsteins and those like him who think they own it.

  3. Very Funny says:

    Look who wants to be Mr. Clean here, very funny. Then again there’s a sucker born every day. Somebody will be impressed with this.

    Not me.

  4. Good Point says:

    Anyone else find it ironic that a 6-time Miami Mayor is railing against corruption?

    Isn’t that the epitome of the pot calling the kettle black?

  5. Hurley Fan says:

    Jay Hurley is a good judge and an honorable man. I can’t believe he would participate in any wrongdoing like this. Where is the proof?

  6. 4 DCA says:

    Why would Dorian Damoorgian participate in this wrongdoing? Show us the proof? I don’t believe it.

  7. makes no sense says:

    Just show a shred of proof that any of the Broward judges knew of or had any connection to any of Rothstein’s donations. Regarding Hurley, why would Rothstein spend money to make a county judge? And, anyone who knows Hurley knows that he wouldn’t even need Rothstein. The governor was his frat brother!

  8. makes no sense says:

    “Maurice Ferre has called for an investigation into charges”…
    Which “charges”? The statement to Buddy from a “reliable source” charges? Rothstein has not made a public statement that judges were bought. Neither the FBI or US Attorney has made a statement on the matter. So, where do these “charges” emanate from?
    Does Ferre suggest that the FBI would not already be on the case if they thought that the Governor had done anything improper regarding the appointment of judges?
    Lets see Rothstein stand up and point the finger. Then lets see who is telling the truth.

  9. Hey Idiots! says:

    Nothing in Ferre’s allegations suggests THE JUDGES were in on the fix leading to their appointments. These may well have been paybacks to Rothstein by Crist in exchange for Rothstein dropping big bucks into the Republican Party of Florida. Jay, Carlos and Barbara may well be sitting in bench seats bought and paid for by Rothstein, only the three of them didn’t know it. It was just Rothstein getting his favored Republicans du jour (Jay, Carlos and Barbara) appointed to the bench.

    And, as for Damoorgian, I don’t see where his appointment was even implicated in Rothstein playing any improper role in. It’s the Levine DCA appointment that looks very suspicious.

  10. Pat says:

    Judge Barbara Mccarthy’s appointment needs looking into. Rothstein/Rosendfelt were her campaign treasurers. Hummmmmmmm.

  11. Its a conspiracy says:

    Someone should make a specific public accusation against the Governor or Judge McCarthy regarding her appointment. The accusation should lay out the facts of wrongdoing.
    Unlike Pat, I don’t go on witch hunts based on “Hmmmmmm”.
    Hey Pat, if you have info. about wrongdoing lay it out on your next post. Make sure that you sign your name…

  12. Paul says:

    Isn’t Judge McCarthy the wife of Judge Birken? As in Judge Birken, the father of RRA lawyer Shawn Birken.

  13. Mark says:

    Damoorgian was appointed in 2007, months before Rothstein’s appointment to the JNC.

  14. AG says:

    This article is factually incorrect. Spencer Levine was not the CEO of the North Broward Hospital District. That was Alan Levine whom now is the head of health services for the state of Louisiana. Alan Levine has never been a judge-

    FROM BUDDY: Not the article, but the news release reproduced here is incorrect.
    The writer is correct.