Miami Beach mayoral dash opens two seats for newcomers
He says that the facebook post by his wife about his near future as U.S. Congressman was a joke.
David Cardenas with his jokester wife and presidential flop Mitt Romney has always shown his partisan colors.
But David Cardenas, son of national GOP big wig Al Cardenas and local young GOPpie, is running for something: Miami Beach Commission.
Commissioner Jerry Libbin‘s bid to unseat Miami Beach Mayor Matti Bower provided Cardenas — who filed last week — with the opportunity he has been waiting for.
“The time is right. People are looking for new direction,” Cardenas told Ladra. “What we’ve seen in Miami Beach is people playing musical chairs. I bring a fresh perspective.”
But is that also a very partisan perspective? Cardenas has been active of late in the Florida Republican Party, leading the MavPAC in the Sunshine State and representing at the Republican National Convention in Tampa last year. While he gets points for seeking office where he lives — a concept that many electeds do not grasp — one might think Cardenas would use the GOP capital he’s built so far and run for something with an R behind it instead of a non-partisan race.
“I’m building my support with people from both political parties,” he said. “For me, it’s important to get bipartisan support.”
Um, to get elected in Miami Beach, you will need bipartisan support. But I do suspect he will get financial support from either the official GOP or some of its most prominent and generous contributors and/or electeds through their PACs. Because the party wants to start sewing in the leaders of tomorrow and are talking about getting a bench ready for 2016 and beyond.
Cardenas said he didn’t know if he would continue with his MavPAC activities. “If that becomes a conflict of interest, I’ll have to leave it. I haven’t had that conversation yet.”
But he did say he was not going to back any of the three mayoral candidates. The other commissioner who is widely rumored to be running for Bower’s job is Vice Mayor Michael Gongora.
“I’m focused on my own race. I’m staying out of that race,” he said. “It’s going to be an interesting nine months.”
I’ll say. Another potential candidate on the increasingly crowded ballot could be former Beach City Manager Jorge Gonzalez, quoted in Miami New Times last week as mulling over a run for either mayor or commissioner.
Is it a long fall from Congressman to Commissioner? One might think so. But Cardenas told Ladra that the pre-election facebook post last year that got him a lot of flack from his friends — written by his wife and calling him the next U.S. Congressman when he was commenting on national television about the presidential race and David Rivera’s woes – was just a practical joke.
“She loves to do that.”