One thumbs up, one thumbs down after Coral Gables candidate forum

One thumbs up, one thumbs down after Coral Gables candidate forum
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There were completely polar opposite reactions to the performance of two commission candidates after the first Coral Gables candidate forum last week.

Former commissioner Ralph Cabrera, who spoke with authority and experience, got the endorsement of the Coral Gables Police union. Former interim city manager Carmen Olazabal lost a key supporter.

“I walked out and have withdrawn support or endorsement of candidate Carmen Olazabal as she surprisingly completely ignored extensive pre-debate prepping and public speaking training I and others undertook to enhance her showing and opportunity to impress the public,” wrote Gonzalo Sanabria on his Facebook page Friday, the morning after the Coral Gables Chamber forum.

“Please be aware I’ve retracted my endorsement and thanks to all of you in hopes you vote for the best candidate of your choice come next April.”

Read related: Commission candidate Carmen Olazabal can’t rewrite ugly past

While Ladra is glad Sanabria, a failed candidate himself, has seen the light, we can’t help but wonder what in the world made him think he was capable of prepping anyone?

And, also, if Olazabal needed “enhancement” then why support her in the first place? Would the enhancement continue into office?

It was a 180-degree difference when it came to the Fraternal Order of Police endorsement that Cabrera got Tuesday, which showed true confidence in a candidate.

“We appreciate your past service to the city of Coral Gables along with your current vision to keep the citizens safe and to address our ever-increasing traffic flow problems,” wrote President Javier Bruzos.

“The respect and caring with which you treat our residents, employees and the law enforcement community is an example for us all to follow,” Bruzos wrote. “The members of the Fraternal Order of Police are excited to have someone with your experience and understanding of what makes Coral Gables one of the best cities in the United States as our commissioner.”

Read related: Coral Gables candidate Jorge Fors had illegal Homestead exemption

There’s another candidate in the race, but Jorge Fors has been sliding back into the oblivion from which he came after it was disclosed on this very blog that he cheated the county through Homestead exemption fraud for at least eight years. He did pay a penalty in January for seven of those years, because he was running for office probably.

The next candidate forum in Coral Gables is on Thursday at the Coco Plum Woman’s Club, 1375 Sunset Drive. Doors open at 6 p.m.

7 Responses to "One thumbs up, one thumbs down after Coral Gables candidate forum"

  1. Rachel Lauzuriquer   March 13, 2019 at 8:34 am

    Carmen Olazabal is no competition for Ralph Cabrera who is the only and obvious choice for our city commission.

    Ms Olazabal should be ashamed to be running for public office in the city of Coral Gables when she got “run” out of Coral Gables for her ineptitude as assistant city manager and her pitiful service as interim manager. Since no one really knew of any accomplishments under her reign she had to remind the city dais of the same via a memo before replacement by Cathy Swanson-Rivenbark. In a previous attempt to secure her raise, Olazabal’s office placed a resolution on the consent agenda for the Aug. 26 2014 city commission meeting regarding her compensation package.

  2. Gonzalo Sanabria   March 13, 2019 at 9:37 am

    Good morning Elaine Marie. Be it known here I did not authorize you to copy and print my FB comments as you did and as to “failed” candidate there’s been many”unfailed” electoral lifetime successes. As to “prepping” I am a Certified Master Toastmaster skilled at public speaking and have “prepped” in both Dpanish and English dozens of friends and candidates at all levels and layers of Federal, State, County, Political Party and Local government and yes I’m “award winning” too with verifiable commendations and awards
    Other than that; keep taking cheap unwarranted shots at me…… I love it

  3. Maria C Cruz   March 13, 2019 at 10:51 am

    Sometimes it is not easy to see through the smoke and mirrors. Sometimes it takes longer to see the REAL person. College degrees do not guarantee ethical behavior, and/or common sense. It appears to me that Ms Olazabal thinks that her academic resume is all that counts. My mother used to say, “el paso por la universidad, pero la universidad no paso por el.” Loosely translated it means, he went to college, but didn’t learn anything.
    Mr Sanabria invested time and effort getting Ms. Olazabal ready. She obviously believed she knew better!!! I can’t blame him for dropping his support and I’m not surprised. Mr Sanabria certainly knew better!
    I wonder what Merrett Stierheim would have done if after bringing him in because as interim city manager she didn’t know how to handle collective bargaining, she had chosen to disregard his professional advise. I bet he would have also walked away.

  4. TellingItLikeIs   March 13, 2019 at 9:41 pm

    Carmen must be soooooooo heartbroken!

  5. Daniel   March 14, 2019 at 6:58 pm

    I am voting for Carmen. The only qualified person on the ballot.

  6. Marcos   March 15, 2019 at 2:38 pm

    Daniel, why are you voting for Carmen? How is Cabrera or Fors not qualified? Carmen keeps saying how she could have had a lucrative career. I don’t know what that means. I looked her up and I don’t exactly know what she does or who her clients are. Why does she want to be a commissioner exactly? I understand she was a former employee in the Gables who got pushed out. Very confused and I’m not buying it. She’s capable of giving us a straight answer if there was one, and she’s not.

  7. Pingback: Coral Gables candidate Jorge Fors stirs annexation fears for votes – Political Cortadito

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