Long-Time Political Leader Murray Siegel Dies


Murray Siegel, who was a powerful political condominium leader for 36 years, has died.

He died Tuesday and services were held Thursday.  He was 93.

Siegel was the political boss of Polynesian Gardens in Plantation.  He was legendary in political circles.

After retiring from the costume jewelry business in New York City, Siegel moved to Broward in 1973 and jumped immediately into Democratic politics.

Soon a wide range of politicians were making the journey to the center of Siegel’s kingdom: His apartment,  Unit 115, in the development in east Plantation.

On Election Day, Siegel would stand outside the polling place and hand out his palm cards.

“He had the tiniest palm cards, remembered Property Appraiser Lori Parrish.  “He would keep them in his pocket, reach in and hand them out like they were stolen watches.  

They may have been tiny, but they worked. Siegel and his cronies swayed several hundred votes in every election.

In later years, Siegel became legally blind. It didn’t slow him down.

Son-in-law Gordon Sanders said he was active to the end. 

“He was in the Democratic Club, Sanders said.  “He did everything.

 I remember interviewing Siegel around 2000 in his apartment. He was excited about the upcoming presidential election, but bemoaning the changing demographics of Polynesian Gardens.

Young people were moving in and they don’t vote, Siegel told me.  

He didn’t understand why would not vote because it was so important to him to have a say in the direction of society.

Siegel’s death is another reminder that the era of condominium bosses controlling politics is coming to an end.  If that means that his generation will be replaced by apathy, it is not a good trend.

Murray Siegel will be missed. He was one of a kind and I was proud to have met him.

In addition to Gordon Sanders, Siegel is survived by daughters Ellen Sanders and Arleen Siegel.

One Response to “Long-Time Political Leader Murray Siegel Dies”

  1. Lori Parrish says:

    I meant my comment to be a “cute” one. He would work from 7AM to 7PM and his little palm cards worked Big results for lots of us.
    May Murray rest in peace.