Sid Dinerstein busts up liberal election forum

When Sid Dinerstein, chairman of the Republican Party of Palm Beach County, received an email about a biased election forum organized by the Sun Sentinel, he got a conservative added to the panel.

Alan Bergstein, a Republican activist and contributing writer to, forwarded to Chairman Dinerstein a copy of the print advertisement for the election forum, being held at Lynn University and sponsored by Auto Nation. In forwarding the email, originally sent to Bergstein by someone named Hank Sarkis, Bergstein told Dinerstein:

Thanks to Hank for the attached ad from the Sun Sentinel. His comments are below. But, please understand that every participant in the “impartial panel” is an acknowledged and outspoken Democrat. The ad should have been entitled, “How loyal Democrats feel about new Election Laws.” It is outrageous for a university and local “newspaper” to sponsor a Democrat forum without labeling it for what it is. Election fraud has already begun. Keep your eyes open for more of the same. “Nice guys finish last!”

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Under the headline, “Is Florida Rigging the 2012 Election? How Florida’s new election laws will turn away voters in 2012,” the ad named four Democrats as panel participants.

Dinerstein contacted his sources at the Sun Sentinel, and not long afterward, my phone rang. I was asked to join the panel discussion on the new election laws, and I agreed to do it.

“What good is knowing everybody if you can’t reach out to right a wrong?” Dinerstein said. “I do and I did.”

There’s an important lesson in this for political activists.

Getting mad in politics has its place. I’m certainly a testament to that. But getting tangible results for a political party often requires diplomacy and media contacts cultivated over many years.

Dinerstein knew whom to contact, and even more importantly, what to say and how to say it.

Yelling and screaming at the other side may be emotionally satisfying, but it doesn’t accomplish anything. In fact, it often hurts the cause one is attempting to promote.


Winning elections isn’t about going to partisan political club events (although they are an important part of the bonding process) and talking to people who think the way you do. Winning elections is about getting out in the world and making your case to people who do not think like you, or at the very least, people who are open to the possibility of voting your way.

I’ll do my best to be civil, fair and informative. If that doesn’t work, I’ll make sure all the Democrats on the panel have an opportunity to fully appreciate my always warm, sweet and sunny disposition.

It would be nice if there were a few friendly faces in the crowd when I have to sit there with four Democrats, so I’m hoping some of my readers will attend.

You must pre-register to attend, so get it done today.

Wednesday, November 2nd, at 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Lynn University in Boca Raton, in the International Center’s Amarnick-Goldstein Concert Hall.

Reservations are required. Seating is limited on a first-come, first-served basis.

Website: Lynn University


Map & Directions: Amarnick-Goldstein Concert Hall


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