MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Two county commissioners are both on the ballot for Miami-Dade’s top job as mayor of Florida’s most populous county of 2.7 million people.

Democrat Daniella Levine Cava calls herself a water warrior, a champion of the environment.

She wants to expand affordable housing and invest in infrastructure and mass transit.

She supports the conversation that’s come from the racial protests this past summer.

“Mostly in this community, in this county, in the heart of Liberty City, I do want to say there is racism in our world that has persisted for so long in this country. It’s an embarrassment. It’s a shameful history, a shameful legacy,” she said. “And I, with you, will image and make happen a future, an equal future for everyone and all of us. That is my promise.”

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And her big focus — fighting COVID-19.  She vows to appoint a medical officer to guide her.

“I’ve been very concerned that we have not lead with science. Unfortunately, the mayor was too eager to push through.  We all want to get back to work, but we opened too soon.  We had spikes in our cases, we had to close back down,” she said.

Levine Cava said the push now is to revitalize the economy.

“We have to double down and invest in the rebuilding of our economy with innovation, with training, with loans, with technical assistance, and that is what I will do as mayor,” Levine Cava said.

Republican Esteban “Steve” Bovo said his run for Miami-Dade County mayor is based on conservative principles and will not bend to the interest of extreme liberals.

“We could go down this macabre radical left agenda that turns us into Portland, New York, Chicago,” Bovo said.  “And I can tell you steadfast that in Hialeah we don’t want to go down that socialist path.”

He’s pushing for better transportation, affordable housing and protecting the environment.

He’s calling for an initiative named “Operation Blue and Brown” to strengthen community and police partnerships.

When speaking about the summer protests, he said the Black Lives Matter movement was hijacked.

“I think we were robbed, quite honestly, from having a real dialogue, not just in this community but maybe nationwide, if not worldwide on the issues of race, race relations, better comprehension, better conversation,” he said. “Quite honestly what I see in a lot of these demonstrations, not a lot of African Americans participating. I see a lot of white folks that have a different agenda, which is really anti-American, anti-capitalism, anti-democracy.”

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In the fight against COVID, he’d collaborate with local, state and federal efforts, focusing on getting local leaders on the same page.

“You can’t have one rule in Hialeah, a different one in Homestead and another one in Aventura.  It doesn’t make any sense. We gotta be uniformed in the way we approach this,” he said.

Ted Scouten

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