Eleven candidates finally qualified to run for county mayor by the 5 p.m. deadline today, including four additional names that were new ones -- in this race, anyway.
Wilbur Bell and Gabrielle Redfern, who ran for Miami Beach mayor and commissioner last year but lost, filed and qualified. So did Eddie Lewish, who ran for property appraiser and lost. There is another person named Jeffrey Lampert who qualified (who I don't know who that could be).
The expected line up is there, as well: Hialeah Mayor Julio Robaina, former Miami-Dade Commissioner Carlos Gimenez, who resigned Tuesday to run for the post, former state Rep. Marcelo Llorente, businessman and one-time interim county commissioner Jose "Pepe" Cancio, rapper and political blogger Luther "Luke" Campbell. Also qualifying: former Miami-Dade Transit director Roosevelt Bradle and former gubernatorial candidate Farid Khavari.
Campaign finance reports were not available online for all the candidates (we wonder if they are late reporting them for some reason or if it's just a lot of work to upload so much information). But Gimenez and Campbell turned in reports that show a huge gap in their support bases -- with Campbell reporting a total of $250 in contributions and Gimenez raising almost $227,000 in less than three months (compared to the $160,000 loaned to himself by Cancio and $370,000 raised by Llorente in two years). Khavari turned in a report that shows he raised 16 cents and spent $62. I don't know about all of you but Ladra does not want him in charge of our tax dollars.
Ladra can't possibly digest and analyze all the money and where it comes from honey right away, so we will be reading the reports for the next could of days (bring me alcohol). But one thing strikes us as funny already: Contributions to the Gimenez campaign by Ronald Esserman and Gus Machado, car dealers who Ladra supposes do not agree with Norman Braman's "covenant with what people" it seems. We can't wait to read the other reports.