Less than two weeks ago, Brito (photographed here at a 2009 event picking names for a door prize out of a bucket, much like Ladra supposes she picks names of who to support next) lauded Gimenez publicly. She was either working or volunteering for the Gimenez campaign along with pollster/consultant Dario Moreno, who worked at FIU and is Brito's mentor and political father. "Not anymore," said a campaign insider, confirmed by another Gimenez supporter.
That's because Brito seems to have switched sides and gone on attack.
Brito, who told Ladra Monday that she was doing voter data research for Norman Braman through an Arizona company called Silver Bullet that Braman has paid thousands to through his three PACs (more on that later), is named in an April 5 press release as the head of The Accountability Project, another PAC ("electioneering organization is a different way to say PAC) formed by political junkmail guru-turned-consultant Keith Donner. Both have said they are not working for any mayoral candidate, but the [Non]Accountability Project has received $10,000 from another PAC (it's a plague) chaired by Julio Ponce, director of the Hialeah Housing Authority (which is always good for a few thousand votes) and a close ally of the Mayor Julio Robaina, also running for county mayor. Donner, who also used the PAC to smear a Coral Gables commission candidate, formed several PACs in Miami Beach while he worked a candidate's campaign there and Brito dreamt up the TaxPayer Coalition PAC when she ran Mimi Planas commission bid in district 10 and was helping Johnny Farias in a state house race, so they share this strategy.
Ladra was not terribly surprised to find Brito -- who earlier said that Gimenez was on the ball -- switch sides and call him "the poster child for what is wrong with Miami-Dade" in a press release from the PAC announcing a "public education campaign aimed at exposing the truth about" Gimenez. Truth? Brito's truth depends on who is writing her check. In addition to the 60-second radio spot aired on Cuban AM radio, the campaign also has a website, www.gimenez-truth.com, with the possibly PBA-funded jingles poking fun at the commissioner and a tabloid like graphic similar to other smear mailers from Donner's templates with exclamation points, quotes taken out of context, and criticism on his pension and 25 years as a public employee. The release notes that Gimenez has two pensions, but fails to say that he contributed to them for over 25 years and says that "Brito also noted" Gimenez voted against term limits but failed to mention he voted against 12-year term limits because he favored 8-year limits. That's just disingenuous, Vanessa. You were there at the meeting. Gimenez also wanted to put the $95,000 salary and no outside employment provisions to be as separate measures. (Ladra is voting against limits with a salary and the language currently written, which we think was intentional sabotage).
Brito, who has been seen with charter committee chairman and Bramanite Victor Diaz, did not mention that Gimenez put all the 2008 charter review reform recommendations on the agenda and has brought up term limits four times in six years on the dais.
Truth? How can we tell when Vanessa Brito is telling the truth?
Is it when she thanks Gimenez on his profile page a day after the vote for [non]reform? Or when she posts this on her page later on March 25? "Thank you Commissioner Rebeca Sosa and Carlos Gimenez for recognizing what the people of Miami-Dade really want."
Now, 11 days later: "Commissioner Gimenez just doesn't get it. He's simply ignoring the will of the people."
Well, first he recognized what the people want. Now he ignores those people. What is going to be the "truth" tomorrow?
"We hope that the radio spot and website will allow voters to learn more about Commissioner Gimenez so they can make an informed decision about the candidates running for Miami-Dade mayor," Brito said to end the press release she probably wrote herself.
Informed? Don't you mean manipulated? Why don't you inform the voters that your PAC is being funded by Robaina?
Ladra also learned the hard way that Brito will say what is convenient to her and has not two but three sides to her mouth. And we are sure that, like Gimenez and his people, others Vanessicans will see Brito's true colors and begin to jump ship.
Maybe then they'll recall her.