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Failed sheriff candidate sued by pollster

Scott Israel, the Democrat who lost his race against Broward Republican Sheriff Al Lamberti in November, has been sued by The Kitchens Group.

Jim Kitchens said he tried to talk to Israel about paying him back the $13,400, but to no avail.

"Very early on he was blaming other people for his campaign loss, the way it was run and he was going to hire an attorney to handle campaign matters so I figured I better do the same,'' said Kitchens, who said this is only the second time in 30 years he's had to sue over an unpaid polling bill.

Israel wouldn't comment on the lawsuit filed last week and said he is meeting with an attorney today.

"The bill definitely wasn't paid. We won't dispute the bill wasn't paid,'' Israel said. "It was just why it wasn't paid.''

Israel said he thought that someone else was handling paying the bill -- more specifically, he told www.browardbeat.com he thought that was campaign manager Judy Stern's responsibility.

"Oh please,'' Stern said. "Good try. Go talk to the Kitchens Group.''

Having a spat with one of Broward's most powerful campaign managers and a pollster isn't the way to lay the groundwork for a future campaign. Israel said he hasn't ruled out running for sheriff or another office in the future. He recently opened an agency that handles private investigations, expert testimony and government consulting. Two of Israel's most notable coworkers are former Hollywood Police Chief James Scarberry and Rick Lemack who lost the Democratic sheriff's primary to Israel.