Judges Nervous as Filing Opens For Bench





The first day of judicial qualifying on Monday had judges squirming on the bench as they waited to see if they got opposition.

There were no surprises and no new opponents.

No one in a black robe whose term is up this year can rest easy yet. Qualifying for the 2014 ballot doesn’t end until May 2, Friday at Noon.

One widespread and persistent rumor:

There is a bounty on Circuit Judge Steve Feren. An aggrieved loser in a custody case has offered to raise or donate $10,000 to a candidate that would take on Feren, the former mayor of Sunrise.

The parties named in this report would not return a call for comment.

So far the only judges who have challenges are Circuit Judge Lynn Rosenthal and County Judges Ellen Feld and Ian Richards.

A former U. S. prosecutor appointed in 2012 by Gov. Rick Scott, Rosenthal’s opponent is Frantz “Jahra” McLawrence, an experienced criminal defense attorney who lost an earlier race for judge.

Although a political novice, Rosenthal has a lot going for her. She has a better ballot name than Frantz “Jahra” McLawrence. She is female. She is older and more experienced.

I have written extensively on the Richards race before here and here. And here is some background on the Feld race.

Courthouse observers also will be interested to see if Julie Shapiro Harris switches races before the close of qualifying. Shapiro Harris has already qualified for the race against Stacey Schulman, who appears to have an overwhelming advantage in fund raising and support.

Meanwhile, don’t expect much work to get done in some courtrooms this week until Noon on Friday. Judges will be too busy checking the Elections Office computer on their iPhones.

10 Responses to “Judges Nervous as Filing Opens For Bench”

  1. Owl says:

    Buddy, one typo, this is for 2014 not 2016. More importantly, the article is nice but not news…yet. It’s like saying “Patient Nervous Before Surgery.” This is a necessary procedure, but I doubt anyone enjoys it.


    Thanks for catching the typo.

  2. tell the truth says:

    Julie Harris doesn’t have the experience in the law to be a circuit judge. She might make a decent county judge.

  3. Lawyer Bob says:

    Ellen Feld’s husband bought her a judgeship six years ago and will keep her in that seat this year. No contest.

  4. Long Black Robe (Ret) says:

    In the past, we would all gather in the Supervisor’s office just before noon on Friday to see if we had an opponent. When clock passed 12, judges who didn’t get an opponent and their aides would cheer and all go out for lunch and maybe some libations. It was a lot more fun than checking the Internet.

  5. Just one vote says:

    Please… Please… Someone jump into Steve Feren race!!!

  6. The Guess Who says:

    Feren is getting an opponent.

  7. Knows for sure says:

    Steve Feren is definitely getting an opponent.

    A seasoned, highly experienced and formidable opponent at that.

    Do you think Steve Feren will not campaign if it rains?

  8. Yawn says:

    John Contini, no baggage there,

    One may find Jesus who wipes away sins, but it doesn’t mean the sins didn’t happen….

  9. Party Girl says:

    Claudia Robinson:

    Her fundraiser post card.


    “Smoke, drink, relax”
    “Make a $100 contribution and receive a complimentary drink and cigar”

    11 Law Enforcement Officers did get hooked by the Cigar and pretty woman THAT NIGHT. Shame on them!

    Do you think these “Trent girls” will vote for you? I don’t think so….


    And Ahearn wants to make this nut girl a judge? Let’s wait and laugh.

  10. NoKasen says:

    And Mike Dutko wants to put a slick attorney with serious ethical issue on the bench??

    Defending the most hated woman in America reviews the true color of JONATHAN KASEN And Jose Baez!


    I would vote for any nut girl over CASEY ANTHONY’S ATTORNEY !!