Broward Judge Holds Court With Political Operatives

Political consultants Dan Lewis, center, and David Brown on right, attend Judge Hurley breakfast

In another example of hyper-political behavior, Broward County Judge Jay Hurley holds weekly breakfast meeting with a wide array of political consultants, operatives and vendors at a Fort Lauderdale restaurant. Last year, REDBROWARD observed Hurley meeting with his 2010 political consultant Norm Leonard. Now, pictures posted on Facebook show Hurley meeting with several more operatives. Judge Hurley has not filed campaign paperwork for the 2016 election.

Photographs from Saturday’s meeting at the Jetway Cafe show Judge Hurley having breakfast with Democrat political consultants David Brown, Barry Harris and Dan Lewis. Even though Hurley, a college fraternity brother of former Governor Charlie Crist, often portrays himself as a “tea party” Republican, insiders say Hurley has dealt with Democrat operatives such a Jack Shifrel and Judy Stern.

Earlier this month, REDBROWARD revealed Hurley approved of a vanity website which highlights his appearances in Broward bond court.

On Hurley’s website, the bond court feed from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel is prominently displayed.  The spartan site contains little else. The website is operated by local Democrat operative Ron Mills of RainbowUsa hosting.

When contacted by REDBROWARD, Mills said Hurley is “fully aware of the website.” He said he is operating the website as a volunteer. Mills said Hurley is “definitely aware of the site….it gets lots of hits.”

Mills told REDBROWARD he has been attending Hurley breakfasts “for years.”

Over the last year, REDBROWARD has chronicled Hurley’s political appearance. In October 2013, Hurley attended a Wilton Manors meeting of Broward Democrat politicians hosted by State Senator Maria Sachs and State Rep. Perry Thurston. Last month, Hurley appeared at the midnight ceremony to welcome gay marriage to Broward county.

Courthouse insiders question why Judge Hurley maintains such a high political profile. Broward County Public Defender Howard Finkelstein told REDBROWARD he had no idea why a sitting judge would act this way.

Judge Jay Hurley, on left, with his political consultant Norm Leonard at the Jetway cafe on January 31, 2015

Published by Tom Lauder

Covering South Florida Politics Since 2010...As Seen On: POLITICO, The Huffington Post, The South Florida Sun-Sentinel, The Miami Herald, WPLG LOCAL 10 (ABC MIAMI), The New Times

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