Ouch! This is going to hurt. Former GOP governor of Florida Charlie Christ, who is now trying to regain the office as a Democrat is being accused by one of his former money men of selling Judgeships.
Scott Rothstein, who raised money for Christ when he was a Republican was a prominent lawyer convicted of running a $1.4 billion Ponzi scheme, testified under oath about the cash for courtroom scheme.
Rothstein testified that as a fundraiser he had a “quid pro quo” relationship in which he was able to encourage Mr. Crist, then the Florida governor, to name judges to the bench in Broward County who would rule favorably for his law firm.
“For certain contributions, people were appointed to the bench ,” Rothstein said in testimony reported by local news media. “I was able to convince him to do a lot of things. He knew how that game was played. I expected him to do certain things in exchange for large contributions.”
Rothstein, who was sentenced to 50 years in prison, also testified that he used his position on a commission that nominated judges for the 4th District Court of Appeals to suggest judicial appointees Mr. Crist wanted, even though the selection process was supposed to be based on merit and free of political influence.
“There wasn’t supposed to be outside influence through the governor’s office. But there was through me,” he told the courts.
Crist who leads incumbent Governor Rick Scott by 7% in a University of Florida poll released 2/6, vehemently denies Rothstein’s claims.
“Scott Rothstein fooled lots of people and, like many, I regret trusting him. But as for his false accusation, let’s remember, these are the words of a convicted felon and known liar serving a 50-year jail sentence,” Mr. Crist told The Washington Times.
Nevertheless this revelation has to hurt Crist who is already under fire for having different positions now than he did four years ago when he was a Republican.