June 28 – Miami-Dade County Mayoral Election
After the extraordinary recall of sitting mayor Carlos Alvarez, removed from office by the wrath of voters over raising taxes and raising the pay to his aides simultaneously, two candidates remain standing for a runoff after being picked out of a field of 11 in an election a few weeks ago.
Though the race is for a technically non-partisan seat, both candidates are Republicans. One is Carlos Gimenez, a former County Commissioner. Julio Robaina received the most votes in the first round and has elected executive experience as the member of Hialeah. (On an unrelated side note, his city was one side many years ago, to all my fellow Supreme Court fanatics, of a fascinating and influential court decision (Church of Lukumi Babalu Aye v. City of Hialeah)
Both men agree on most issues, though there has been simmering tension over the issue of maquinitas, video game slot machines, which Gimenez and present county ordinances consider illegal sources of gambling while Robaina has sought to regulate and formally legalize them in Hialeah.
A humorous exchange also happened at a recent debate – when pushed about their feelings of unpopular Florida governor Rick Scott, both denied supporting him in the primary with Robaina saying that he did not support him in the general and Gimenez stated that he voted for Scott’s Democratic opponent.