Update: Advertising Hits In Geller, Gunzburger Race


The mêlée between Steve Geller and Sue Gunzburger has entered a new stage.

Flyers have begun hitting the mail boxes of South Broward voters. 

These are the first of many pieces that voters will received in what promises to be a bitter brawl for County Commission District 6, a seat Gunzburger has held since 1992.

The common political wisdom is that the first advertising mailed to voters should be a “feel good advertising piece featuring the background and family history of the candidate.

The nasty stuff comes later.

Gunzburger’s flyer is a typical example of  a “feel good” piece. 

Entitled “The Sue Gunzburger Story, it features slices of her life —  Baby Sue, graduting from college, the candidate with her late husband and young family, the candidate cutting the ribbon on some project and Gunzburger speaking to the Hollywood Hills Civic Association.

To strengthen her Democratic credentials in this August 24 party primary, there is a picture of Sue with County Judge Robert Lee during the famed 2000 recount and a picture of her with former Vice President Al Gore.

In all a clean-looking, well-done, informative piece typical of her son Ron Gunzburger.  He is her political adviser and a savvy consultant. He is also known as a vicious campaigner so expect lots of attacks from the Gunzburger camp in addition to any “feel good” advertising.

Geller’s first mailing breaks the “feel good mold.  It is an attack piece, unusual for such an early contact with the voters.

Geller’s mailing, which went only to voters in the Hollybrook condominium community, can be seen below. I’ve blown it up so you can read it.

It was designed by David Brown, a canny veteran consultant who is Geller’s chief political strategist.   

The advertising portrays Geller with Carl Shechter, the Pembroke Pines commissioner and Hollybrook condo leader.  Shechter first endorsed Gunzburger and then flipped to endorse Geller.  

A box on the flyer features the endorsements Geller got from groups like the fire and police unions. It also contains an invition to a campaign breakfast.

Then the text chastises “my opponent” for not running a clean campaign. Although it doesn’t mention Gunzburger, that’s an attack.

Geller interprets the piece differently.  He says the advertising  is not an attack.

He contends the piece simply points out that she has refused to sign a clean campaigning pledge.  That is not an attack, he says.

I disagree.  He criticizes Gunzburger in the piece, which is an attack.

Geller sent me an e-mail today, but asked me not to quote from it.

But on October 13, 2009, Geller explained his position on the clean campaign pledge quite clearly in a post on Browardbeat.com:

Although I’ve been the subject of relentless false attacks and innuendoes, I’ve not responded in kind. All I’ve done is try and seek the high ground, offering to run a campaign where I will only mention my name, and use my picture, and not use your name or picture, if you’ll agree to run a campaign where you only use your name and picture, and not use mine. I’ll run on my record and view of the future, you run on yours. You’ve refused this, saying that you want to attack me on my record.”

This leads to the question, how do you define a clean campaign? One candidate’s attack is another candidate’s fair comment.  

That’s why there is a Fair Campaign Practices Committee in Broward.  It is their job to rebuke unfair campaigns.

I can make two predictions about Geller versus Gunzburger.

One: This race will end up at the Fair Campaign Practices Committeemaybe, more than once.

Two: Both candidates will be covered in mud long before voters reach the polls.

16 Responses to “Update: Advertising Hits In Geller, Gunzburger Race”

  1. political bs says:

    all those union endorsements, hold onto your wallets

  2. Low Lifes says:

    It is no wonder that you predict the campaign will be slime. Ron Gunzburger and David Brown are slime.

  3. Geller Lies says:

    Geller is lying. He tells everybody that Sue is attacking him. Speaking the truth isn’t attacks.

  4. Geller Lies says:


  5. Broward Democrat says:

    I’m a political activist who has met David Brown and Ron Gunzburger several times over the years and disagree with the “slime” reference. Both men are very likable, funny, and passionate about their politics. David is very loyal to his friends like Geller. Ron can be endearingly charming, and is really entertaining to talk with.

    FROM BUDDY: I agree totally.

  6. Tommy the Fry Cook says:

    The GONESburger campaign has been lying about Geller on this blog for months.

    They’ve lied about him being a lobbyist responsible for every building project in South Florida (all while ignoring that Sue is bought and paid for by Bernie Friedman), they’ve lied about his livelihood (he’s primarily a lawyer, NOT a lobbyist), and they’ve lied via innuendo and misrepresentations over “ponzi schemer” involvements. If all that were true, where are the facts, evidence, and charges? If you’re going to indict everyone who professionally crossed paths with Rothstein at some point, the governmental buildings in Broward County are going to be VERY empty places…and Sue’d be in that mix as well.

    The TRUTH is that Ron Gunzburger started his typical filthy tactics the moment Geller announced his candidacy. Even on this blog, most of the attacks are very personal (i.e. Geller’s size) BECAUSE THE GONESBURGER CAMP DOESN’T HAVE ANYTHING OF SUBSTANCE TO RUN ON!!! She’s an 18 year incumbent and the best she’s got is making fun of Geller’s weight???

    Look at all of Sue’s prior supporters that switched their support to Geller, including Mr. Schechter above. What’s the first thing Sue’s camp does? They trash the former supporters by talking about how useless and meaningless their endorsements were in the first place. She did it with the firefighters groups, the AFL-CIO, and she REALLY trashed Mr. Schechter. Is there any wonder why people are turning their back on her?!?

    Have a happy retirement, Commissioner, because times are changing…

  7. Huh? says:

    Since when is an invitation a mail piece? Are you kidding? You’re really comparing those two pieces?

    Seriously Buddy, let’s not compare a breakfast invitation with a Broward County Employee yearbook.

    The invitiation wasn’t for a Denny’s Grand Slam. It was to a campaign breakfast for Steve Geller’s campaign.
    Contact with hundreds of voters by mail featuring endorsements and material criticizing your opponent is campaign advertising…plain and simple.

  8. registered voter says:

    Buddy,I just read the piece that Geller has mailed to the residents of Hollybrook. I strongly disagree with your take that this was an attack piece. Sue has flat out denied Geller’s numerous requests (which have even been posted on your blog) to run a clean race. This is not the start of the race (it started months ago) and the Gunzberger campaign has repeatedly distorted the truth about Geller’s record. In this mailing, Geller did not mention anything at all about Gunzberger’s record, distort her image or make up any nonsensical lies.

    FROM BUDDY: The piece has the classic elements of an attack ad.
    (1) It criticizes the opponent.
    (2) It calls into question the opponent’s credibility.
    (3) It has a negative message.
    (4) It contrasts a candidate’s “good” position with the opponent’s “bad” position.

    It is a cleverly constructed attack piece.

    Let me make it clear. I don’t believe there is anything wrong with truthful attack ads and Geller’s is truthful.

    Are there worse, less subtle ads? Yes, much worse. And you’ll see them in the Geller versus Gunzburger campaign.

  9. @Broward Democrat says:

    @Broward Democrat – 9:07am

    You must be deaf, dumb and blind.

    You say you KNOW David Brown? David Brown would sell his own mother for a 3-day old bagel.

    David Brown ROUTINELY betrays anyone and everyone when it is his own best interest to do so.

    David Brown LIES like a Persian rug and will lie to anyone and everyone…again when it is his own best interest to do so.

    So Broward Democrat, I do not know if we are referring to the same David Brown, but I strongly disagree with you and your inaccurate assumptions about David Brown.

    Ronnie, on the other hand, is a what you see is what you get kind of guy. Doesn’t lie, doesn’t steal, just rips your heart out while looking you in the eyes. My kind of guy.

    Stay out of his cross hairs and you’ll be fine. He is one of the best negative guys out there. I’ll bet he know exactly how much belly button lint and toe jam Geller…AND Brown have in their respective navels and between their toes and will use it against them if he has the remotest opportunity.

    Oh, and just one more thing: slime begets slime. Geller is the slimiest, most despicable person walking in Broward. This guys literally makes my flesh crawl he is so disgusting. Guy never met a cheeseburger he didn’t like.

    Cannot wait to see him torn up in the next few months.

    Bet he didn’t tell you he got Joel Steinger’s endorsement did he?

    You’ll hear a lot about that endorsement in the coming months.

  10. Ali says:

    Does Brown’s consulting fees include lying on the blogs?

  11. Politics 101 says:

    Geller challenged the incumbent, Sue Gunzburger. It is Geller’s job to prove that what he has to offer is better than what we have. To do that he must point to things in Sue that we should not want to have going forward. The most convinging one wins. That is politics 101. Sue doesn’t seem to care what Geller says. Geller seems consumed by what Sue might say. Why would that be? What does Geller fear that Sue might say? Is there something he doesn’t want us to know?

  12. to @broward democrat says says:

    What a purely classless and disgusting post. Don’t you have anything more productive to do other than attack a candidate about his weight. I know Geller personally and could not disagree more whole heartedly with you about his character. However, I will not sink down to your infantile level of maturity.

  13. Gonesburger lies says:

    Here’s a fact for you! Right after Sue Gonesburger voted for a project that benefited Rothstein’s client, she received campaign contributions! How come little Ronnie didn’t mention that? Oh yeah, he doesn’t want to confuse the truth with something as important as facts!

  14. But what does he fear? says:

    Nobody seems to want to answer the question. That silence indicates I hit a very delicate nerve.

    Exactly what is Geller so afraid Sue might disclose about his past? What secrets about Geller is he so afraid to allow the public to know?

    Sue doesn’t seem to care what Geller has to say about her, she seems very confident as she should about her past. Why doesn’t Geller feel that way?

    This is the trouble in all this. It seems very clear that Geller has secrets to hide and I will not vote for the “unknown” when I can absolutely live with Sue for another four years.

  15. No Nonsense says:

    It’s funny to see Brown and Gunzberger go after each other in these comments. Do they really think they are fooling anybody?

  16. How ridiculous says:

    What a totally absurd comment. If Geller asks to run a clean campaign and not get negative, that means he’s hiding something. HOW STUPID IS THAT!