Holy cow, hallelujah, there is a God, did hell freeze over in this warm winter? Those were just some of the astonished comments around Palm Beach County when its residents heard that the McAuliffe era had ended! When my first story about McAuliffe ran in March 2010, it was accompanied by a cartoon in which McAuliffe expressed his “fear” over tackling the corruption in Riviera Beach. I was always hopeful that McAuliffe, a man I had formerly nicknamed the “fearless wonderboy” for having climbed two of the world’s highest mountains, would find “his set” when it came to tackling the public corruption in Riviera Beach. Well, McAuliffe never tackled public corruption anywhere in the County, instead he decided to “pussy out” and resigned his office before his term ended. To “pussy out” comes from the word “pusillanimous.” The definition, according the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is: “lacking courage and resolution: marked by contemptible timidity—pu•sil•lan•i•mous•ly adverb.” Accordingly, McAuliffe is now the “pussy-wonderboy” and it is a moniker that will forever mark his dismal legacy as the worst State Attorney in Palm Beach County history.
Over the last two years, we regularly wrote about McAuliffe with the hope that one day, he would step up to the plate, and charge at least one of what our investigations have shown were four corrupt Riviera Beach City Councilpersons. It never came to pass. For the last year, the “pussy-wonderboy” could not even obtain the transcript of an executive session (closed door) Riviera Beach City Council meeting. Why couldn’t he get the transcript? He was too inept to demand a timely hearing, and now the case has been transferred to the third judge on the file. Forgetting how McAuliffe “pussyed out” on Riviera Beach, he has now let down all the citizens of Palm Beach County who bought his b.s. that he was going to make a difference when it came to fighting public corruption. McAuliffe’s claim to fame is one lousy arrest, that of former Palm Beach Commissioner Jeff “Crybaby” Koons! Compare that to Broward State Attorney Michael Satz who has charged a dozen elected officials during the same time frame, and it is obvious that McAuliffe didn’t have the backbone for the job. Being State Attorney is not a popularity contest to curry favor with politicians for future re-election campaigns. Instead, Palm Beach County’s top prosecutor is supposed to be aggressive prosecuting crime and public corruption, not dishonor the once proud office of State Attorney. To the horror of his initial supporters, McAuliffe never was a corruption fighter! McAuliffe’s failure to take action against Riviera Beach officials not only cost the City millions in lost revenue at the city marina, but also caused hardships for hundreds of former marina tenants, and allowed a rogue police department to run roughshod over the city’s residents.
McAuliffe was not stepping down to volunteer at a legal clinic or other pro bono work. No, McAuliffe was hanging it up, in what should be a short and feeble attempt to make the big coin, to work for billionaire Bill Koch. How hypocritical can one man get? It was only 14 months ago that McAuliffe went on television with attack ads against Governor Rick “the Skeletor” Scott, whose big supporters are the Koch brothers! There is more to the recent McAuliffe saga which has left prosecutors, judges and attorneys around the County speechless. According to recent reports, a potential juror, Ms. Melissa McKinlay, a divorced mother of three, asked to be recused from a criminal trial before Palm Beach County Circuit Judge John Kastrenakes. The courtroom video can be found at youtube.com with the title “Juror: I don’t want to serve because the State Attorney threatened me”! It shows a visibly shocked Judge Katrenakes asking McKinlay if it was “the elected state attorney” who threatened her in a parking lot. McKinlay’s reply was “yes,” and that she had filed an ethics complaint against McAuliffe. As a corruption fighter, John Kastrenakes is a personal hero of mine for his legendary accomplishments as a former Assistant United States Attorney. It was John Kastrenakes who put three Palm Beach County Commissioners and two West Palm Beach City Commissioners behind bars, an achievement that forever branded Palm Beach County as “Corruption County.” Two videos of my arrest are also on youtube under the titles “fane lozman arrest at riviera beach city council meeting” and a television news clip “activist arrested at riviera beach city council meeting” after the charges against me were dropped.
So now the burning question: who will be the next State Attorney? Former State Senator Dave Aronberg has declared his candidacy, and Circuit Judge Krista Marx announced that she is seriously considering running. Given his young age, Mr. Aronberg has an admirable background of public service but Judge Marx tops that in experience. Her 13-year record as a prosecutor was exemplary, and the 14-years she has spent on the bench dealing with a number of high-profile cases including the Dunbar Village rape case, shows how she possesses outstanding judgment, leadership and understanding of the law that are the necessary qualities to be State Attorney. It is way too early for The Palm Beach Sun to endorse either at this time, but once elected the new State Attorney can finally get to work tackling the mountain of corruption that is Riviera Beach.
C’est la guerre (this is war) with McAuliffe has now become C’est la vie (that’s life). I repeatedly provided McAuliffe’s office with the results of my investigations into political corruption in Riviera Beach. I spent three long years trying to convince McAuliffe to do his job, sadly all for naught. At least there will not be a fourth year and, with a new State Attorney, the corrupt scum masquerading as local politicians will finally be put where they belong, behind bars! Winners never quit, quitters never win. Thank you for showing your true soul and quitting McAuliffe. With your new life hanging around the big money boys, heh, you never know, you could be the winner of the milk carton photo shoot one day! …The people of Palm Beach County deserve a whole lot better.