MIAMI (CBS4) – The Miami-Dade County runoff election is less than two weeks away. Voters in Miami-Dade County will choose a new Mayor and State House District 110 Representative.
Early voting began on Saturday and will last for just eight days due to a new law that requires early voting to end three days before Election Day, which is June 28th.
Former Miami-Dade Commissioner Carlos Gimenez and former Hialeah Mayor Julio Robaina are running for Mayor after Carlos Alvarez was ousted in March. Both candidates held a rally Saturday.
Earlier Saturday, Robaina visited the West Dade Regional Library, an early voting site, with congressman Mario Diaz-Balart.
“Do you want the same results you’ve been getting in the last seven years?,” Robaina asked. “Then I’m not you candidate.”
Gimenez held an open house from 2 p.m. to 3:30 pm at his North-Central headquarters at 665 N.W. 119th Street in North Miami, alongside former Congresswoman Carrie Meek Saturday.
“I’m pretty sure that I’m going to be the next mayor of Miami Dade,” Gimenez said.
Gimenez announced the endorsement of Meek.
“When the chips fall you need someone who can tell the difference between an A and a B, and Carlos is that kind of man,” Meek said.
Early voters were out Saturday to cast their ballots.
“We’re in tough times right now,” said Gimenez supporter Steven Hunter. “We need someone who is actually going to be honest, that is going to be straight forward and tell us what we can do…work with us to make things better.”
The new law also changed requirements for people who have changed their names or moved out of the county where they voted last; those people must cast provisional ballots.
Miami-Dade’s Mayoral election is the first election to be held under the new law.
Robaina said he’s not happy about the new election law.
“Anytime you restrict people time to vote, it’s not good,” Robaina said.
Robaina and Gimenez participated in a debate at a Spanish-language television station Friday, and urged everyone to vote.
“The mayor’s position of Miami-Dade touches the lives of every citizen in Miami-Dade county. It’s important you get out and vote,” said Commissioner Gimenez.
Robaina added, “Reform, fiscal responsibility to government. Create jobs and economic development. We need to put people back to work and restore confidence
in this government.”
“Vote with your conscience,” Gimenez said. “Just vote.”
Early voting sites will be open from Saturday, June 18th through Saturday, June 25th from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. each day. There are 20 early voting locations. Click Here to see a list of polling locations,candidate Web sites and other voter information.
Absentee voting is already underway. Approximately 60,000 ballots have already been received. Any registered voter eligible to vote in this election may request an absentee ballot on the Elections Department website, by phone at (305) 499-8444, in writing or in person at Election Department Main Office at 2700 NW 87 Ave, Miami or the Voter Information Center (VIC) at the Stephen P. Clark Center, 111 NW 1 Street, Miami (located on the 1st Floor).
If you do want to vote by absentee ballot, submit your request by the deadline which is June 22 at 5:00 p.m., make sure the ballot is received by the Elections Department by Election Day, and be sure to sign the voter certificate on the outside of the absentee ballot envelope.
Former Miami-Dade Commissioner Carlos Gimenez and former Hialeah Mayor Julio Robaina are running for Mayor after Carlos Alvarez was ousted in March.
Jose Oliva is the heavy favorite to beat write-in candidate Antonio Moreno to represent House District 110 in the Florida House. The seat formally belonged to Esteban Bovo who stepped down to successfully run for a Miami-Dade County Commission seat.
For additional information, visit the Miami-Dade Elections Department website at www.miamidade.gov/elections or call 3-1-1.