Carolyn Kennedy, the newly-elected secretary of the Broward Republican Party, supported controversial Democrat State Representative Hazelle Rogers (D-Lauderdale Lakes). RED BROWARD received records which show Kennedy contributed to Rogers’ 2008 campaign for the Florida House of Representatives. This marks the third troubling connection between Kennedy and a Broward Democrat politician.
Rep. Hazelle Rogers, a former Lauderdale Lakes city commissioner, has been at the center of several recent investigations.
In 2011, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported Rogers was at the center of a state and federal investigation into payments she received as a lobbyist for a construction company doing work for Lauderdale Lakes. “Rogers…received in excess of $20,000 to lobby for former Miami Dolphin Dwight Stephenson’s construction firm when she was a city commissioner, then voted in 2007 to give Stephenson’s company the job, sources familiar with the case said….he inquiry is focused on Rogers’ alleged failure to disclose a potential conflict of interest and failing to file forms disclosing the payments as required by law.” Rogers refused to discuss the investigation. “I’ve been advised by counsel not to make any comments based on what you’ve just stated,” Rogers told the Sun Sentinel. Turns out Rogers received $50,000 but she told Bob Norman she would “never sell out her office.”
In 2013, Media Trackers Florida exposed how Rogers was violating the Florida Constitution by living outside of her district. “Rogers owns a large home with her husband outside the House District she represents, but claims she is living in a small, older condominium within her district.”
In 2010, Bob Norman detailed how Dale Holness, Fitzroy Salesman and Hazelle Rogers were part of Joe Eggelletion’s “political mafia.” Norman wrote in the New Times, ” It was [Fitzroy] Salesman, after all, who provided the gateway for the FBI corruption investigation that led agents to Eggelletion and a host of Eggelletion’s political allies (I wanted to say ‘cronies’ but resisted). Eggelletion, of course, is headed to prison as a result of the investigation, as is Salesman. Another former Miramar commissioner, George Pedlar, remains under federal suspicion after he accepted what amounted to a $5,000 illegal campaign contribution from undercover agents. State Rep. Hazelle Rogers may not be out of the woods either — she was caught on tape talking about evading capital gains taxes and may have had her hand in the Miramar pie as well. Another member of the clique, Lauderhill Vice Mayor Dale Holness, apparently avoided undercover agents, though he met with them?”
Last Friday, RED BROWARD detailed more than $800 in payments Carolyn Kennedy received for working on Eggelletion’s 2000 campaign for the Broward County Commission. Some dismissed the information, saying it was 14 years ago. Plus, Kennedy was a Democrat until March 2001. Others claimed it was not an issue because Eggelletion was not charged until 2009.
Ok. Let’s play that game.
What about Kennedy’s repeated visits to Commissoner Dale Holness in 2013?
Before her coronation as BREC Secretary, RED BROWARD documented Kennedy’s three April 2013 to Holness to gain funding for her pet project. Kennedy joined several Democrat activists in a concerted effort to get public funding for Haitian Cultural Month. Broward County Commission visitor logs show Kennedy met with Holness on April 5, April 12 and April 26. Kennedy represented the interests of HYDE (Haitian Youth Development and Education) and Gospelflagfest.org. As RED BROWARD reported, on April 23, 2013, Commissioner Chip LaMarca (R-?) voted for a motion made by Commissioner Dale Holness which called for $15,000 in taxpayer dollars to be allocated to the Community Access Center, Inc “in support of Haitian Cultural Heritage Month.” The taxpayers provided $1,700 worth of mailing and web site design services. The deal was so bad even Stacy Ritter (D-Brazen) called it “pork.” The Daily Broward also exposed how Holness sat on the board of the Community Access Center and how his campaign donors may have been helped by the deal.
Kennedy angrily confronted Daily Broward contributors at a Republican outreach event. Kennedy tried to defend wasting $16,700 of taxpaying dollars. She claimed the stories jeopardized Holness’ attempts to help her group. The money was used on events that promoted Broward Mayor Barbara Sharief and Holness. These events did NOTHING to help the Broward GOP.
Now, RED BROWARD can reveal that Kennedy made a small contribution to Hazelle Rogers 2008 State house Campaign. On July 27,2007, Carolyn Kennedy of 3511 Inverrrary Drive #K110 Lauderhill, Fl 33319 made a $25 contribution to Rogers. At the time, Kennedy had been a registered Republican for more than six years. RED BROWARD verfied Kennedy was registered to vote at that address from January 2008 until September 2009.
But wait, you say, could it be a different Carolyn Kennedy? You may have noted that at the time of the contribution, Kennedy was not registered to vote at that address. True. Also, four months later, in November 2007, Carolyn Kennedy made a $25 contribution to the Florida Republican Party. The address for that contribution was 3300 Inverrary Blvd, Lauderhill FL 33319. Kennedy was never registered to vote at that address.
But, according to Florida corporation records, Kennedy used that as her official address on documents for the Florida Congress On Racial Equality, Inc. (CORE). On the night of her election, Kennedy listed Florida CORE on her resume handed out to BREC members.
We would love to ask Kennedy if she did not make the contribution to Rogers. It’s one of many questions Broward Republican activists wanted to ask Kennedy.
Another question for Kennedy: Did she support Hazelle Rogers while she was a Lauderdale Lakes commissioner?
Here’s a little secret about the media. Usually, when you see a story about a politician or political issue, you’ll see a quote from an average “mother”, “father”, “businessman” or “activist.” This person is almost always a friend of the politician quoted. Just Google the next time you see an average citizen quoted.
RED BROWARD found several articles about Hazelle Rogers containing a quote from a “Carolyn Kennedy.”
An October 2001 Sun-Sentinel story detailed efforts to get Governor Jeb Bush involved to help fix a Lauderdale Lakes community center. Commissioners wanted Bush to intervene with a state agency hired to fix the center. “The reason we hired DMS was because of its association with the state,” said Commissioner Hazelle Rogers. “So now we’re going back to the state for recourse.” Now comes the supporting quote from Kennedy. “It’s quite devastating for the children of Lauderdale Lakes,” said Carolyn Kennedy, chairwoman of the city’s Recreation Advisory Board. “At this point, all they have is an open park.”
Is this same Kennedy? BREC members would love to ask her.
A January 2002 Sun-Sentinel story covered Lauderdale Lakes’ attempts to clean up the Sunset Hills and Glen Cove condominiums with Community Redevelopment Money. Rogers backed a plan to have the city buy these slums with taxpayer dollars. “It’s better for the city to obtain these units than to have slumlords in our city,” Commissioner Hazelle Rogers said. Then, Carolyn Kennedy swoops in to back up Rogers’ position.
“‘It’s a good idea for the city to come in. The place is basically abandoned,’ said Carolyn Kennedy, who recently bought a Sunset Hills apartment and encouraged friends to do the same. But Kennedy says there’s generally nothing wrong with investor-owners, it’s just that some investors buy too many apartments and are unable to take care of them.”
According to property records and voter registration records, at the time of this story, BREC Secretary Carolyn Kennedy lived at 3710 NW 21st Street unit 210 Lauderdale Lakes FL 33311. This address is located in the Sunset Hills condo development.
BREC members would love to know if this is yet another case of mistaken identity. They’d love the chance to ask her about all these issues.
But Broward Republican Chairman Tom Truex, RNC Co-Chair Sharon Day and Broward Commissioner Chip LaMarca didn’t want people asking questions. They wanted Kennedy to be secretary very badly. Why?
They held a secret meeting days before the election at the Sheraton Suites hotel on Cypress Creek Road. Mailers were sent to BREC members with pictures of Sharon Day, Chip LaMarca and the logos of Governor Rick Scott, the RPOF, the RNC and former Presidential candidates. There was no disclaimer. BREC members have no idea who paid for the mailer. How did Kennedy get access to BREC members’ addresses so quickly?
Who helped her?
On the night of the election, Truex rejected calls to postpone the election. Very odd, since minutes earlier he stated the election was the least important item on the agenda. Then, Truex ignored other nominations from the floor, quickly using a parliamentarian’s trick to close nominations.
The fix was in.
After the election, Day admitted Kennedy was her handpicked successor to outgoing secretary Cara Pavalock. Day stated she had to “talk [Kennedy] into running” for the position. Day went on to scold members for daring to speak out and oppose her directives.
Think back to December 2012, Kennedy was part of the ill-fated plan by “The Chairmen” to unseat BREC Chairman Richard DeNapoli. According to former Congressional candidate Karen Harrington, the former Chairmen (Ed Pozzuoli, Shane Strum, Kevin Tynan, and Chip LaMarca) recruited her to run for BREC chair. Kennedy was her running mate for vice chair. Harrington exposed the shenanigans in a press release:
“When I was recruited to run for chair of the Broward Republican Party, there was a necessity and desire to change the leadership of our local party. Along with former BREC Chairmen Chip La Marca, Ed Pozzuoli, Kevin Tynan and Shane Strum it was agreed that the leadership of Richard DeNapoli lacked the vision and competence to recover from this years devastating election cycle.”
It’s time for Sharon Day, LaMarca and the “chairmen” to stop playing games with the BREC membership. Stop playing games with our elections. Remember the 2006 straw vote for Charlie Crist over Tom Gallagher? Or the games behind a 2009 straw poll to help Crist battle Marco Rubio? What about last year’s Common Core resolution derailed by LaMarca, Pozzuoli and “friends” of Charter Schools USA?
Enough is enough.
Broward Republicans deserve answers.
Broward Republicans deserve the truth.