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The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Richard Wennet. He gets the award for the following-

Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Richard Wennet isn't ready to hang up his judicial robe without a fight.

A month after a Tallahassee judge upheld the results of a problem-fraught recount of the August primary and declared attorney William Abramson the winner, Wennet on Monday appealed the ruling.
Election 2008

If he's successful, a special election could cost an estimated $1.3 million.

When problems surfaced with the ballot-counting in the primary, Wennet said he didn't want to soak taxpayers for the expense of a special election.

His attorney, Gerald Richman, said Monday that Wennet is asking that his appeal be decided quickly. If the appeals court agrees, Richman said the race could be decided as part of the March municipal elections. That would help reduce the cost.

But, he said, Wennet is convinced that Leon County Judge Charles Francis erred when he ruled that the county elections canvassing board complied with state law when it repeatedly recounted ballots to decide the primary. When the first recount came up about 3,500 ballots short, several recounts were held. State law allows for only one.

Does an improperly done recount count? When all ballots were accounted for, Wennet was the loser. Why did it take the judge a month to file another appeal? Also note he's in a hurry now because somebody is about to sworn in to take his job.

Sitting judges rarely get voted out of office down here. Wennet earned the honor both for his less than stellar work on the bench and his conduct in his personal life.

I got a deal for the judge. Let him foot the 1.3 million dollar tab for a special election. In the meantime I name Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Richard Wennet today's Knucklehead of the Day.


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Comments (6)

"Palm Beach County" Say....... (Below threshold)
Gmac:

"Palm Beach County" Say....isn't that where all those retired bozo's from the NE states moved to in swarms? Aren't they all lifetime party line Democrats that don't have any problems spending other people's money?

IMHO they got the elected officials they so justly deserve.

Bill, can somebody just get... (Below threshold)
John F Not Kerry:

Bill, can somebody just get Palm Beach County to secede? This is just getting ridiculous.

I usually enjoy your posts,... (Below threshold)
abc:

I usually enjoy your posts, but this one seems way off base.

Regarding the 30-day delay - when you file a suit, you don't just walk into a courthouse and announce "I'm suing John Doe!". You have to file pleadings, and it helps if they are well written and researched. 30 days is a reasonable time for that.

Second, that link about his past only shows that he dated some nutjob. There's a lot of that going around, so I wouldn't throw stones. She illegally taped him and then tried to extort money from him - do you really think that is ok, even in Florida? Doesn't sound like baseless accusation, since there should be evidence to back such claims. On top of that, she was on probation for vandalizing another ex's car. Yeah, sure, she's the victim here. You need to get your BS detector checked out if you're siding with her.

Finally, it sound like you're blaming him because that crack Florida voting system has screwed up again. I know it's a huge expense, but it's not this guy's fault they can't find their collective asses with both hands.

I enjoy most of your posts, but this one seems off-base.

ABC writes-"Regard... (Below threshold)

ABC writes-

"Regarding the 30-day delay - when you file a suit, you don't just walk into a courthouse and announce "I'm suing John Doe!"."

Really? How long did it take for both sides to file suits after the 2000 Presidential election?

As for the crack Florida voting system, we know its flaws. Are you supposing it was wrong in 2000? Wennet lost when all ballots were counted and is a sore loser and a deserving knucklehead winner.

"Really? How long did it ta... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

"Really? How long did it take for both sides to file suits after the 2000 Presidential election?"

15, 20 minutes? Maybe 12 hours, max...

Is it possible to prefile suits yet not activate them until a particular situation occurs?

I stand by what I said. </... (Below threshold)
abc:

I stand by what I said.

This is not a presidential election and this guy doesn't have 1000 lawyers clamoring to help him file his suit in 10 minutes. Likewise, he does not have such a team making preparations for every such contingency. I had begun comparing this to Gore in my first post but erased it because it's apples to oranges.

Assuming he waited for the final results, it probably took him time to decide to sue, and then he has to build a persuasive case. If he's doing it himself, or even if he hired a firm, 30 days is not that long. It would do him no good if he did a half-ass job to speed things up but failed to make a credible claim resulting in the case being thrown out.

I'm sorry, I agree with a lot of your awards, but sometimes it seems that you are really stretching for someone to dink with the knucklehead award. You should have gone after the elections people here - they screwed up, and then screwed up the recount, and then they decided to not follow the law and try again and again, leaving this guy an opening for this suit.

While maybe a sore loser, this election sounds shady enough that, if I were him, I'd question the results. He is well within his rights to sue over the breach of the law. If it's just sour grapes, this will be tossed out quickly and will not cost over a million dollars. If he has a case, let justice be served. Unfortunately, if Bush-Gore didn't force a fix of the Florida elections system, nothing will.




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