Donald Trump endorsed a former campaign director for a Miami-Dade County Commission seat, with the former president repeating his falsehood about a “rigged and stolen” 2020 election in backing lobbyist Kevin Marino Cabrera as a candidate who will represent “his community with honor.”
“Kevin Cabrera will be a great member of the Miami-Dade County Commission,” Trump said in a statement from his “Save America” political action committee that Cabrera released Thursday evening.
The endorsement comes weeks before the filing deadline for the race to succeed term-limited Rebeca Sosa as the county commissioner representing District 6.
The district is a suburban area that stretches from Miami International Airport to South Miami and includes West Miami and parts of Coral Gables, Hialeah, Miami Springs and Miami. Trump easily carried the district in 2020, beating Joe Biden by 20 points.
READ MORE: Who are the candidates running for Miami-Dade County Commission seats in 2022?
Trump’s entry into county politics will be another test of the former president’s sway over Republicans. On Thursday morning, Sosa endorsed a new candidate in the race, Coral Gables Commissioner Jorge Fors Jr., saying she wanted someone with a background in government. “He has experience,” she said of Fors. “The community knows him.”
Cabrera works as a lobbyist, public relations and campaign consultant at the Mercury consulting firm.
In his endorsement statement, Trump touted Cabrera as backing low taxes, stronger border controls and secure elections. Trump repeated his false claim that the presidential election he lost two years ago was “rigged and stolen.”
In an interview, Cabrera declined to say whether Biden won the election fairly. “I’m not an expert,” he said. “I know a lot of people have a lot of concerns.”
Cabrera was registered to lobby for clients in Miami-Dade earlier this year but no longer has active registrations with the county. In 2020, he served as Trump’s Florida director in the presidential election. His wife is Rep. Demi Busatta Cabrera, a Republican representing the 114th District in the Florida House.
Commission seats are officially non-partisan, with all candidates competing in the same Aug. 23 primary. The top two vote-getters move on to a November runoff if nobody receives more than 50% of the initial vote.
Other candidates in the District 6 race are: Dariel Fernandez, a Miami-Dade Republican Committee member and owner of a software company, and architect Orlando Lamas.
Cabrera said the endorsement came about quickly on Thursday. “I spoke to the president about 30 minutes ago,” he said.
This story was originally published May 5, 2022 8:13 PM.
Doug Hanks covers Miami-Dade government for the Herald. He’s worked at the paper for nearly 20 years, covering real estate, tourism and the economy before joining the Metro desk in 2014.
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