Ritter’s Re-Election Does Well Despite Bad Publicity


For more than three years, County Commissioner Stacy Ritter and her lobbyist husband Russ Klenet have been the piñata that critics loved to smack.

Stacy Ritter

Ritter – who has never been charged with anything — has been savaged repeatedly by bloggers and what’s left of the print media.  It is alleged that she was involved in corruption, voting for her husband’s clients, accepting illegal gifts and played fast and loose with her campaign money.

Florida’s Election Commission has accused Ritter in civil proceedings of more than two dozen campaign violations. Ritter blames the problem on bookkeeping errors.

Regardless, the commission action resulted in even more negative stories.

Has all this drum beat of bad publicity had any effect on her ability to fund a re-election? In a word, No.

Those who do business with the county proved ready to help with campaign contributions.

The reason is simple to explain:

Ritter still has one of nine votes on the county commission.  If you do business with the county, you want her vote.

The critics can’t take that vote away from her.  Only the voters can do that in the August, 2012 Democratic primary.  Or the courts…if she really did anything wrong.

Ritter collected $38,950 and $3,197 in-kind contributions of goods and services in the first quarter of her re-election campaign, according to the Supervisor of Elections filings this month

This is actually better than she did in 2008 when she ran unopposed.  That year she received $29,250 in donations in the first quarter of her campaign.

Ritter got money from the same ol’ crew of county insiders.

There were lobbyists like George Platt and Mike Moskowitz.  There were waste companies like Southern Waste and Wheelabrator, who are fighting for recycling business in Broward.  Airport concessions like Sheltair.  Out of state gaming companies.  Development industry types.

Her first fund raiser was thrown by the ubiquitous campaign contributor, lobbyist Bernie Friedman and his partner Neil Schiller.

Another fund raiser was thrown by Tom McDonald, an engineering company owner who does lots of government work.  He is also a personal friend and neighbor of Ritter’s.

9 Responses to “Ritter’s Re-Election Does Well Despite Bad Publicity”

  1. Give Me A Break says:

    Buddy: Berger and Ale are not facing Ritter…they are GETTING RID OF LIEBERMAN

  2. Two plus two equals five says:

    Uhhh… Buddy… Berger and Ale are running in district 1 which is Ilene Lieberman’s seat, not Stacy’s which is district 3.

  3. Herman Pecker says:

    Your vacation may have gone a little too long- last I checked, Ale and Berger were in Lieberman’s district and were looking at her seat.

  4. Buddy says:


    Thanks to my readers for pointing out my mistake. I corrected it.

    Ritter has no opposition!

    As Herman Pecker wrote, my mind is still on vacation in Canada. Sorry.

    Buddy Nevins

  5. Dan Reynolds says:


  6. Disgraceful says:

    Stacy Ritter doesn’t deserve re-election

  7. Democratic Activist says:

    Stacy Ritter is a Progressive who got unfair treatment from the media. She hasn’t done anything wrong and deserves to be reelected.

  8. anonymous says:

    Where’s the “like” button on here? 🙂
    I agree, Democratic Activist. If anyone was as bad as the media claimed, they would be in jail. And some are.
    Keep it real, Buddy. You really tell it like it is!

  9. AMwakeupcall says:

    Ritter is an effective politician. She’s responsive, in my experience, to those who contact her on county issues. She’s informed and experienced. Most of us are very uncomfortable with the coziness between lobbyists and elected officials, but Ritter’s treatment by the local press- mostly the New Times- seems to have been pretty unfair. How about some discussion about her capabilities and her reasoned efforts to put legitimate items on the ballot- which ultimately won? We could do better than Stacey Ritter- if we get really lucky- and we could certainly do a lot worse. It seems to me, however, that in Broward County misogyny is a huge factor when criticizing female politicians.