GOP backstabber Al Zucaro joins board of Republican club

Generally speaking, so-called Republicans who openly endorse Democrats over their fellow party members aren’t offered positions of power in the GOP. That doesn’t seem to be the case in Palm Beach County.

Former West Palm Beach City Commissioner Al Zucaro was recently appointed treasurer of the Boca Raton Republican Club, despite having endorsed Democrat Tom Gustafson over incumbent Republican state Rep. Bill Hager in District 89 in November.

Al Zucaro

Al Zucaro eating a spare rib

In a rambling Oct. 5 op-ed for the penny saver-like Boca Raton Tribune,  Zucaro gave the middle finger to his own party in an endorsement that said, “Like a salmon swimming up stream, this writer believes that Tom Gustafson is the better candidate to represent our interests.”

“This is the first time I’m hearing about this,” said Ira Sabin, the newly elected chairman of the Palm Beach County Republican Party. “I had no idea Al has been endorsing Democrats.”

Not too many people read the Boca Raton Tribune, and even fewer read anything a blowhard like Zucaro has to say. So it’s entirely possible the new leaders of the local GOP didn’t know of Zucaro’s most recent betrayal.

Frankly, no one would care at all about anything Zucaro has to say had he not married wealthy Republican widow Yvonne Boice a few years ago. Boice is no stranger to endorsing Democrats in contested races herself. She is close friends with former Democratic County Commissioner Burt Aaronson and endorsed him over Republican Charlotte Beasley in 2008.

The Palm Beach Post’s Jane Musgrave has written extensively about some of Zucaro’s other problems in “Former city commissioner and mayoral wannabe Al Zucaro ordered to pay $406,000” and “Legal problems mount for ex-West Palm commissioner Zucaro.

A lot of people thought Gustafson, a former Democratic speaker of the Florida House, would beat Hager. I’m sure Zucaro did, too. But Hager trounced him by a respectable margin.

Zucaro has been looking for a title to call his own for years now, and he’s been making a lot of noise about running for the Boca Raton City Council. Playing both sides can be a very effective strategy in a local municipal race, but it’s generally frowned upon by both major political parties, and it’s usually a disqualifier for party positions.

The local GOP has enough problems to tackle without adding the title-grubbing opportunist Zucaro to the list.


Zucaro’s endorsement of Gustafson: Popularity Contest or Substantive Debate….

Jack Furnari

President at BizPac Review
Jack Furnari is a founding partner, writer and CEO of BizPac Review.


  • Wow

    How different it is over in the Democratic Party. If you were to endorse a prominent republican for office your name would be Robert Wexler and you would be worshipped.

  • Big Dem

    Al is one of the most self-centered opportunists you will ever meet. He is basically a sophisticated carnival barker, and he is constantly hawking himself. They had to know they where getting a blowhard when they elected him. Shows you why the Republican Party will never be a realistic political power in Palm Beach County.

    • ben

      Zucaro is a crook. When he was a city commissioner he would try and shake you down for a financial commitment to his World Trade Center scam. I didn't pay to play and got hammered.


      The portrayal of him in this article is accurate. He married a Republican ATM to propel him to a position of influence. He wants to be a somebody.

      But he will always be considered a sleaze.

  • too funny

    OMG, this is too funny. Talk about the height of hypocrisy. You openly supported democrats while you were on the board of the REC with Sid's blessing. You did it again using the, so called conservative, biz pac review. I think someone should write one of these scathing revenge articles about you. Thanks for the laugh this morning. Hysterical.

    • Julie

      Regardless of what the author of this article may or may not have done, this is ridiculous. The larger issue in the article is that Zucaro has a judgment against him for mishandling money and he's now appointed to a Treasurer position?! The GOP is on fire right now, and these people appointed to help need to be vetted and have an uncompromising loyalty the Republican Party. If he was real man and cared about the future of this party, he would step down.

  • sane in Boca

    Jack, look who's calling the ketttle black! You openly supported Dave Aronberg, the democrat for State Attorney over Diana Keever, the Republican!

  • Marla

    I'm no expert in politics, but aren't there rules on both sides against publicly endorsing anyone from the other Party if you are involved at the leadership level? Are they going to let him keep the position now that they are aware of it? Isn't anyone paying attention in the Palm Beach County Republican Party?

    BOTH he and his wife endorse Democrats? Maybe a better strategy would be helping his role model Charlie Crist, become governor. Then he could just be appointed to an office.

  • Jessica

    YES, All of what you say is TRUE, but additionally the Republican Party of Palm Beach County is to also blame for letting this happen. Ira Sabin has Al Zucaro as his "right arm" these days and using Al as his mentor. And Ira Sabin is the chairman. Watch out Palm Beach County as Palm Beach County Republicans just got hammered again!

    • Bill

      @ Jessica

      Not sure what planet you're coming from. Since when does the new chairman associate with Al Zucaro? You are obviously a disgruntled member who didn't get Marie Hope voted in as the chairman. Need I say more!

  • J. T.

    I heard from two people there was a private meeting that Ira Sabin had with Al Zucaro and only some of the new board members 2 weeks ago. Why only some? Why a private meeting? Sounds like the Palm Beach County Republican Party going from bad to worse.

    • Bill

      @ J.T.

      Obviously….another disgruntled voter who didn't get Marie Hope elected as chairman. Your comments are very weak….

  • Hypocrisy or Rules

    The assumptions are at it again. All talk and no proof. What's the matter, you get a little upset when one of your gang is actually guilty of what you seem to detest the most? Waiting to see what you will do now? If Alfred remains on the board after a clear violation of a loyalty oath, then every board member and the new chair are hypocrites. I bet if it were someone their little social club didn't like, they would make it their solemn vow to search and destroy. Ira better man up and do the right thing in the name of fairness. I want to see the REC member who is willing to stand up and say this is wrong, he cannot serve on the board. Can I get a second?

  • Casey

    Al Zucaro was a democrat right? I mean he used to be registered as a democrat. He is always helping democrats. Why is the Republican Party so surprised? Fool me once shame on me, Fool me twice and …

  • Peter Feaman

    Read the article more carefully. Al was made Treasurer of the Boca Raton Republican Club. There is no report that he holds a position with the Palm Beach County Republican Party. The Palm Beach County Rep. Party does not control who becomes officers of the 10 Republican Clubs in Palm Beach County

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