'The Love Sponge' Wearing Down On Second Day Of Testimony?
TAMPA, FL. -- Called back to the witness stand this morning and again in the afternoon, Bubba "The Love Sponge" Clem (photo above), continued defending himself against a defamation suit by former rival radio host Todd "MJ" Schnitt. Today was the second day of trial. Clem was on the witness stand both days.
(Update: Friday morning on Bubba Clem's radio show he claimed the "fix is in" referring to what Bubba inferred was partiality on the part of Circuit Judge James D. Arnold. Clem said he was being badgered by Schnitt's attorney Phil Campbell who was receiving favorable rulings over Clem's attorney, Joseph Diaco, Jr.
Clem continues to call this case a "First Amendment" trial, about his freedom of speech and says he is being attacked because of his continuing remarks against the State Attorney in Hillsborough County, Fl., Mark A. Ober.)
Clem is appearing live from 6 a.m. until about 7:30 a.m. each morning discussing the trial with his radio show cast, some of whom cannot talk about the trial. Sequestration is applying to two cast members who will be called as witnesses. They are not allowed to watch, discuss, or read anything about the trial until after they testify.)
Both Tampa Bay morning show DJs; Schnitt, formerly known as MJ Kelli, broadcast on WFLZ 93.3 and Clem on WHPT 102.5. Schnitt now has a syndicated afternoon conservative talk radio show heard on 970 AM in Tampa and dozens of affiliates around the country, while Clem continues his syndicated morning show, heard in Fort Myers on WRXK 96.1 and other affiliates.
Bubba Clem was seemingly growing weary of the barrage of questions from attorneys today, and seemingly not able to focus clearly on answering questions without commentary. Contrasted from yesterday's "to-the-point" answers to questions, Clem today was a bit combative and defensive, tending to wind his way around direct answers, and plaintiff's attorney Phil Campbell had to ask the judge to request Clem answer only the question asked.
Perhaps, feeling he had to explain each answer with reason's why he did certain things, the questioning and answers got a bit tedious today, if not laughable.
Jurors once again were 'treated' to hearing audio segments from the Bubba morning radio show, often more than once. As new witnesses were called attorney Campbell played some of the audio bits anew for each witness.
The trial so far, seems to be beneficial to the parties for publicity value more than any damning evidence presented yet to establish Schnitt, aka MJ Kelli and wife have been defamed. But, there still dozens of more witnesses to be called in the projected 3-week Hillsborough County trial.
Both radio DJs should at least reap bigger ratings, despite the many hundreds of thousands of dollars this trial will take out of each's pocket. Both are reportedly millionaires, so maybe they won't miss the cash.
Photo: 13th Judicial Circuit Courts/Fox 13 Tampa Bay