Matthew Bogdanoff of Fort Lauderdale is the new Florida regional director for the Republican Jewish Coalition.
Working from the organization’s Boca Raton office, he’ll have the whole state as his territory. The RJC announced the hiring Wednesday.
Bogdanoff, 29, is the son of former state Sen. Ellyn Bogdanoff, R-Fort Lauderdale, who was the only Jewish Republican in the Florida Legislature during her final term, which ended last year.
Matthew Bogdanoff has plenty of political credentials of his own.
He was the campaign manager for state Rep. George Moraitis, R-Fort Lauderdale, who was first elected in 2010. He went on to become Moraitis’ first legislative aide. His LinkedIn profile shows he also worked as the government affairs liaison for the Florida Department of Transportation in South Florida.
During the 2012 presidential election, Bogdanoff worked as a Florida field representative for the Republican Jewish Coalition. The RJC had a huge effort in Florida, with mixed success.
Jewish voters in battleground states of Florida and Ohio were a big prize in the 2012 presidential election, and the Republican Jewish Coalition spent big to woo them. Executive director Matt Brooks – who announced Bogdanoff’s hiring – said last fall the group was allocating a third of its $6.5 million budget for battleground states to Florida.
Though the RJC describes itself as “the nation’s only grassroots organization of Jewish Republicans” it gets lot of its money from big money donors such as billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson.
Last year, the coalition was responsible for the "Obama ... Oy Vey!!" billboards motorists saw on Interstate 95 and Florida's Turnpike, full-page ads in Jewish newspapers and $1.5 million of TV ads on South Florida TV stations and cable channels. A wave of mailings, totaling almost 1 million pieces, hit the mailboxes of local Jewish voters.
Jewish voters' support for President Barack Obama slipped in South Florida in 2012, but Republicans failed to peel away large numbers of Jews from their long-standing allegiance to the Democratic Party, despite a multi-year effort and the RJC spending.
Exit polls showed Jewish voters were one of Obama's strongest voting blocs in Florida. He got 66 percent of the Jewish vote, according to exit polling -- much better than the 50 percent of the overall vote he received in Florida. Yet, Obama's support from Florida Jewish voters fell from 2008, when various estimates put his total at 74 percent to 78 percent.
Brooks said after the election that the results were positive. "This is the fifth out of six national elections in which we have gained market share and continue to make inroads at the expense of the Democrats, who continue to lose market share," he said.