New Judge Learning In Courtroom & Campaign




Broward Circuit Judge Lynn Rosenthal says that after three decades as a lawyer, she has begun learning a new skill – politics.

Rosenthal was appointed in July 2012 by Gov. Rick Scott to fill an open seat. Now she has begun her 2014 campaign.

Her resume is largely this: A federal prosecutor from 1985 to 2012.

Not exactly the best training for the rough-and-tumble world of Broward politics.

Cloistered in all-but lifetime jobs, federal prosecutors are notorious for being indifferent to public sentiment.  To put it bluntly, federal prosecutors don’t give a damn what people think because they are accountable only to the U. S. Justice Department…and hardly accountable to that agency since almost no one is ever fired.

So Rosenthal has had to learn a new skill set.

She is learning to talk to average folks. She is listening to their views.  And she is asking them for their votes.

Campaigning  “is so different from what I did before.  (But) it has been the most wonderful experience. I feel blessed by the opportunity to meet so many different people,” says Rosenthal, 56, of Weston.




Lynn Rosenthal being sworn-in, 2012



Her role as a judge has also been an education.

Prosecutors’ job is to whittle away the rights of defendants to gain a conviction.  Defense attorneys attempt to defend and expand a defendant’s rights.

A judge is supposed to be a neutral referee between the two sides, courthouse sources complain.

“Its an education for me,” she says. “I ask people to give me criticism so I can be a better judge.”

But three lawyers told that Rosenthal hasn’t learned the difference from being a prosecutor and judge, yet. They would love to find a candidate to run against Rosenthal, who is yet unopposed.

“She sits on the bench like she is a still a prosecutor. Defendants get less than a fair shake,” one lawyer involved in judicial races says.

No lawyer has had the guts to challenge her.  After talking to her, I understand why.

She’s a great candidate – well-spoken and smart.  She says the right things about a judge being fair and impartial.

Another reason challengers are shying away from her is her name – Rosenthal. Some still mistakenly believe that a Jewish-sounding name means certain victory for a judicial candidate.

It’s not true. Ask judicial candidates Julie Shapiro-Harris, Rhoda Sokoloff, Richard Sachs, Ilene Lieberman and Melanie Golden, whose names couldn’t overcome other shortcomings in last year’s election.

Still, enough lawyers believe the old myth that none have taken her on yet.

Or as one political consultant, who is not involved in her campaign, says:

“Bottom line is the local criminal defense lawyers have no clue how to gear up a campaign… and she has a great ballot name. I think she is a tough beat, she is attractive, will have money, good talker and an incumbent.”

So for now, Rosenthal is safe. She shouldn’t get comfortable. Judicial candidates have a history of bouncing from one race to another .

And it’s a long time until the close of filing next year.


10 Responses to “New Judge Learning In Courtroom & Campaign”

  1. Terry Gerand says:

    She sounds like a good judge. Defense attorneys aren’t happy unless they get a bleeding heart liberal like Let Them Go Lebow as judge. We need some balance to protect the public.

  2. Just saying says:

    Btw buddy- the job of a prosecutor is NOT to whittle away the rights of defendants. Where did you get that from?

    Also, having a Jewish sounding name definitely does not guarantee a win- especially if that name runs against an incumbent judge with any sounding name. Just saying.


    Show me a prosecutor who agrees to a unlawful search motion and I may agree with you.

    Prosecutors routinely defend ridiculous statements from the police claiming probable cause for a search. Cops know that prosecutors will work to limit Fourth Amendment protections by allowing police to find causes for a search because:
    *They smelled marijuana from a car driving in the opposite direction on a crowded highway;
    *The suspect had red eyes;
    *The suspect smelled of alcohol or drugs;
    *The suspect acted suspicious.

    Prosectors worked to allow the stopping and searching of blacks and Hispanics through racial profiling, which many courts eventually found an illegal violation of the Fourth Amendment. This was most recently thrown out in New York City.

    I could go on.

  3. Owl says:

    It rarely matters whether or not someone is a good Judge in Broward, it’s more of a combination of a name game and certain politicos printing fake palm cards. Judge Rosenthal will be fine, and Judge Lebow was and is a great Judge. Judge Lebow made decisions that were hard and many times unpopular but she almost always got affirmed by the appeals court. On the other hand, the public loved a certain now-Federal Judge who got reversed every week but was “tough.” That guy cost the taxpayers millions (and he still always got elected).

  4. John Henry says:

    “Show me a prosecutor who agrees to a unlawful search motion and I may agree with you”


    The SAO seemed to “go along” or “agree” with the shady/illegal police work on this case.

  5. Your Pal Al Lameberti says:

    Lieberman lost because she is a corrupt hag and the voters had enough.

  6. All Rise says:

    Corrupt police officers, Buddy how dare you. If your speaking about Chief Frank Adderley’s relationship with Scott Rothstein’s Criminal Enterprise, LLC. The whore house across the street,kept by Scott. sale of drugs in the offices of RRA, all the while secured by the best police detail money could buy, yet none of these highly trained sleuths ever seen a crime being committed. This included the command staff & police officers. The timekeeper of the Ponzi Enterprise now promoted to Lt. Steven Greenlaw committed perjury yet there was no prosecution by S A Mike Satz office. Last but not least Capt Rick Maglione who deleted officers arrest record from FLPD’s internal affairs database. S A’s public corruption unit is impotent, this is why LEO corruption is so rampant in South Florida.

  7. mark this day down says:

    Leo corruption is the worst kind. Worse than political graft. Leo corruption violates innocent people’s freedoms and erodes the community trust in government, political corruption just violates their pocket.

  8. Your Pal Al Lameberti says:

    Yeah but nobody caught me.

  9. Alvin Entin says:

    Lynn was a fair prosecutor and is a fair judge. I have opposed her in Court for years and can say that she was tough but fair and her word was her bond. Becoming a Judge is a learning experience and she has been improving by the day. Give her a break, she will be a Judge to be proud of.

  10. Lynn and Michael Braun says:

    Michael and I just learned about your becoming a Judge. (better late than never). Congratulations. We are so happy for you and your family