Candidates: Campaign Money Slow For Judicial Races


It’s a sign of the bad economic times, I am told.

Several judicial candidates grumble that they are having a hard time raising money because of the recession. 


I promised not to mention names.  But these lawyers say that if money doesn’t start flowing into their campaigns, their dreams of the bench will disappear faster than their 401Ks.

You can’t blame lawyers for not putting next year’s election on the front burner. 

Who is going to fork over hundreds or thousands when their job might disappear any day. Or their clients may never pay? Or both!

Roshawn Banks kicked off her campaign for county court with a whopping $100.

Rhoda Sokoloff, who practices family law,  (A misnomer.  I think the specialty should be called “breaking-up-families law.) opened her campaign to replace retiring Broward Circuit Judge Linda Vitale with a earth-shaking $550 this quarter.

Sokoloff faces Rob Jakovich from the Public Defenders Office.  He is billing himself on the ballot at Robert Abraham Jakovich,  probably to make sure voters know he is one of the Chosen People.

When will somebody clue these candidates in I’m not picking on Jakovich.  I don’t even know him. that this pandering is extremely patronizing to Jewish voters.  And will somebody tell them that the Jewish senior voters have been dying faster than the Republican Party.

Note to Broward Bar:  You should raise money to put out a flyer next summer with impartial short biographies and resumes of all the judicial candidates.  It should be mailed to all voters. 

A mailing coming from a respected source like the Bar would help educate voters and that could get us a better judiciary. It could also counter the nasty campaigning that permeates Broward judicial races.

If my sources are representative and the economy doesn’t improve, candidates may not have money for many of those anonymous hit pieces next year.

We will see.

The rest of the second quarter contributions will be available later this week or the beginning of next week.  That’s just the starting point.

If the recession is really affecting the races,  you’ll have to see if donations can be sustained over several quarters.

9 Responses to “Candidates: Campaign Money Slow For Judicial Races”

  1. Campagin Cash Way Down says:

    It’s not just judges having trouble raising money.

    Broward political contributors who ordinarily give generously to local campaigns are either not giving at all right now or writing much smaller checks. That’s because the recession has hit them hard and there’s not much action in government anymore.

    Few current office holders have shown a continued ability to raising large sums for re-election. Those few are the strongest of the strong. As to the weaker ones, they had better watch out because the door is open.

    A window of opportunity exists right now for the determined, self-funded candidates to come forward and unseat incumbents. The campaign cash playing field in many cases will be leveled to the point where a challenger can win more easily. That’s why many hungry to serve their community will be studying how incumbent campaign reports come in at the end of this week.

    I’m betting lots of decisions will be made as a result. This recession could result in something of a shake-up in Broward politics.

    Wouldn’t that be something to see.

  2. S only says:

    It would be a GOOD something to see

  3. The long black robe (ret.) says:

    The judiciary was much better off when judges didn’t have to worry that every ruling on every motion could cost them campaign contributions. If this continues, the judiciary will be only a place for the very wealthy or those who are are political enough to rule the way their campaign contributors want.

  4. Resident says:

    If money is keeping them from running, they shouldn’t run. You can make up a shortage of money if you work harder than your opponent. Many have done it and won. Money helps, but a lack of it is overcomeable.

  5. I was there last August says:

    When will somebody clue these candidates in – I’m not picking on Jakovich. I don’t even know him. –that this pandering is extremely patronizing to Jewish voters. And will somebody tell them that the Jewish senior voters have been dying faster than the Republican Party.

    Buddy, are you having a senior moment? Clue them in AFTER you clue in all the “retired” Incumbent Hispanic Judges!

  6. Merit Appointment Is Answer says:

    Imagine the situation. You want to become a judge, so you go to lawyers and ask them for money. Then they practice before you and you are expected to be independent. And then when you run for re-election, you go to the same lawyers again for more money.

    We’re talking LAWYERS here remember. How the hell does that make any good sense?

    Better to do merit appointments of judges. Panels chosen at random from among the ranks of retired judges, from all walks of life and political backgrounds, get to review resumes and conduct interviews of applicants. They together select the three best for every vacancy and send it to the Governor for selection who MUST pick from that list. The first appointment is for five years. Based on the quality of their work, panels get to review a judges first five years and decide whether to recommend additional five year terms. Those not recommended based on temperament or bad decision making are not recommended. Goals should be set to balance the bench with diversity to the extent possible.

    Doesn’t that sound like a better way to get excellent, much more independent judges selected? Of course it does.

  7. Mrs. Williams says:

    Merit appointments is the answer. I agree with the previous comment. The way it is now judges get elected based on their ethnic appeal or get defeated based on their ethnic heritage.

  8. Gina says:

    I am astounded that an attorney as incompetent as Rhoda Sokoloff (she once hyperventilated during a routine deposition for my Family Court case in 2002), is running for a judicial seat. I agree wholeheartedly with the comment regarding the current system of judicial candidates soliciting attorneys for campaign money being a conduit for corruption as these are the potiential judges who then hear the cases these attorneys present. What kind of justice can we ever hope for in our Family Courts?

  9. anonymous says:

    Finally, there is some rotation in criminal and civil. Why are there no changes in family? Greenhawt needs to be removed. So does Goldenberg. Whay haven’t they….
    Tobin knows they are MOT.