Candidate To City Vendors: Donate To Me Or Else…




Miramar Commission candidate Alejandro (Alex) Casas is the Dumb and Dumber of city candidates.

He was dumb enough to put in writing what campaign contributors have long known:

Donations buy access.

He was dumber to have his letter to Miramar vendors contain what I believe is a not-so-thinly veiled threat:

If you don’t contribute and I win, Miramar may not be “keeping your services” in the future.

It’s in the second paragraph of his letter:

I’m sure you also understand that an “open door policy” directly to the Commission is essential for keeping your services being used in the most efficient manner.

This is blatant intimidation by a candidate.

If Casas is using such coercion now, imagine if he gets elected!

Casas could not be reached for comment.

Here is his offensive letter to Miramar vendors obtained by


Miramar letter

15 Responses to “Candidate To City Vendors: Donate To Me Or Else…”

  1. another perennial candidate says:

    And yet he doesn’t mention that it’s his 7th time running!

    Miramar commission candidate hoping the eighth time is the charm

    By Brian Ballou
    Sun Sentinel

    He has run for commission seven times since 2005, spent a total of about $25,000 in the process, but has never won. In March, he once more hopes Miramar voters will pick him for Seat 1.

    “Yes, it’s me again,” he told a crowd of approximately 200 voters who turned out for a candidate forum Thursday.

    In a two-way race in 2013, Casas pulled out all the stops. He rented Fairway Park for $400, spent $1,000 on mailers to advertise the event, and cooked enough food to feed a small army. But only 20 people showed up, and they were more interested in the food than politics, he says. Casas lost to Winston Barnes, 2,063 to 1,125 votes.

    Like Susan Lucci, the daytime soap opera star who was nominated 19 times before winning an Emmy, Casas, a 66-year-old real estate agent with Coldwell Banker, believes his day will come.

    He recently joked that his wife threatened to go after him with a baseball bat if he runs after this election. Aymet Casas says campaiging has taken its toll on her family.

    “The money is a big thing, but the hours … our son was 8 when we started and I had to abandon him a lot of hours because every Saturday and Sunday we were out in the street campaigning, and then you lose,” she said. “So that was very frustrating; we’ve cried, our son has cried.”

    Casas moved to Miramar 15 years ago and first ran in 2005, finishing third in a four-way race. He ran again five months later in a special election, finishing fifth in a 12-person race. Then in March 2007, he tied for second in a four-way race. Eight months later, in another special election, he finished sixth in a 12-way race. In March 2009, he had his closest finish, losing by 639 votes in a two-way race. In November 2010, he ran in a special election and finished third in a six-person race. In March 2013, he finished second in a two-way race, spending $6,000.

    On March 10, Casas will try to be elected to the seat vacated in November by Alexandra Davis when she ran for the Broward County Commission. He’s raised $1,000 so far.

    He was going to sit this race out but decided to run after noticing that only one candidate had qualified as of Jan. 7.

    “I wanted to offer the citizens of Miramar a choice,” he said.

    A flurry of late sign-ups swelled the field and now Casas is in a six-person race.

    Robert Watson, a professor of American Studies and Political Science at Lynn University, who was published over 30 books on politics and history, said voters tend to tune out repeat candidates.

    “Especially those that run so many times,” he said. “They [voters] see the loss as, well, a loss.”

    Watson said likely campaign donors want to get some “bang for their buck,” rather than back losers.

    “There are some folks who, when bitten by the election bug, can’t seem to shake it. There are others who are ideologically motivated and are relentless and indefatigable campaigners. There are, however, other ways to impact the process such as letters to the editor, rallies, blogging…”

    Carlos Marcos said he has worked on Casas’ last three campaigns. “It has been tough getting out the vote, which is why we’d like to see the city election at the same time as the state and national elections so that there will be a larger turnout,” Marcos said. “Alex is a very emotional and passionate guy and he has the background and the business saavy that makes him a perfect candidate.”

    Casas has an engineering degree and has served on the city’s economic development board but he admits that he’s learned some tough lessons on the campaign trail.

    “I’m trying to do things a little smarter,” he said laughingly after recounting the park experience. “I’ve spent thousands buying wine and food, money that I’ve funded myself, and it hasn’t worked the way I wanted it to.”, 954-356-4188, Twitter: @briballou

    Copyright © 2015, Sun Sentinel


    Miramar and the Sun-Sentinel is luck to have Brian Ballou working for them. I believe he is this former Boston Globe reporter. If so, covering Miramar is way below his weight class.

    Miramar elections are all about ethnic politics. It is more in Miramar than many other communities because the city is so diverse. If Spanish-speaking residents turned out in bigger numbers, maybe Casas would have a better chance.

  2. Kevin Hill says:

    The academic Political Scientist in me objects to the not-so-veiled attempt to intimidate vendors with (not even yet-realized) government power.

    The TEACHER Political Scientist in my objects to the atrocious grammar and spelling in this letter.



  3. Count LF Chodkiewicz Chudzikiewicz says:

    IS THIS REAL? A CANDIDATE ACTUALLY SAYS YOU HAVE TO CONTRIBUT TO GET BUSINESS? IS HE INSANE? IS THERE A CRIME HERE – SOLICITATION OF A BRIBE? CAN HE BE CHARGED? WHERE IS SAM FIELDS WHEN WE NEED HIM? This is the most unbelieveable posting I have ever read about South Florida politics. Solciting a bribe while running for office?ONLY IN SOUTH FLORIDA!

  4. Kevin Hill says:


    given the comment you posted above and the fact that you understand what is happening in Miramar, perhaps it is time for a column on establishing single-member districts in Miramar?

    I use Miramar as an example of the power of districting in my Voting Rights class at FIU. There is a good chance that after March, Miramar will have an all-black commission in a town that is 40% black and 40% Hispanic. If that were al all-white commission is a 40% white city, well, you can imagine…..

    Just food for thought.

    Of course turnout, as you mention, is also important.


  5. Chaz Stevens, I am Festivus says:

    >> The TEACHER Political Scientist in my objects to the atrocious grammar and spelling in this letter.

    My objects?

    Better than thou objects, I suppose.

  6. Talks like a politician says:

    South Florida has just officially become a banana republic. This guy, Casas, just hoisted the flag.

  7. Also Attended says:

    @4 As everyone knows Miramar avoided creating single member districts in order to keep blacks off the commission. As it turn out, the exact opposite became the scenario. Serves them right.

  8. Kevin Hill says:


    Touché. I should probably blame autocorrect!

  9. Kevin Hill says:


    you are correct. Up until 1993, the Dade County Commission was 7 Anglos, 1 Hispanic (elected with majority Anglo support), and 1 Black (ditto). The single-member district suit resulted in 6 Hispanics, 4 blacks, and 3 Anglos (one of whom was elected in a majority Hispanic district).

    Given racially-polarized voting, were Miami-Dade today still to elect its commission in countrywide residential districts, it is not impossible that the commission would be 13 Cubans.


    Deerfield Beach enacted single-member districts in part to keep Century Village from controlling the whole commission. The same result happened in Pembroke Pines, another city with a big Century Village.

    Plantation and Sunrise don’t have single member districts and I don’t ever remember them electing a black, despite a large number of black residents in those cities.

  10. Vendor says:

    I am not sure why thins is so surprising. My company has been visited three times by the BSO tells us if we want to do business the Sheriff you better plan a big contribution to one of his ECO’s or his campaign and will be monitoring the contributor list. The is total bull and unethical to intimidate vendors. Buddy your thoughts on this subject matter.

  11. Wayne Arnold says:

    As the late great Talk Show Host Neil Rogers might have said upon reading the above letter of a politician apparently putting the arm on a potential contributor this is UNBELIEVEABLE!

  12. Sam The Sham says:

    Just sounds like truth in advertising to me.

  13. Lamberti is a Criminal says: he says publicly exactly what all the other criminals say in private. Pay to play is Broward and rewarded by the moron voters.

  14. Lamberti is a Criminal says:

    #10 – That sounds like a Lamberti scam.

  15. electric jack says:

    Dear LAMBERTI IS A CRIMINAL; First of all do not judge others by your warped sense of right and wrong.
    In life we need to stop grabbing a 12 inch paint brush as you do when stating how others need to be. Since my leader spoke in parables lets give you one. If you own a car and you take it in for repairs and you get ripped off you don’t ostracize all mechanics you go find a honest one. The same is true in politics. BTW the person this story is written about is a to putting the city in districts the all knowing professor from a liberal school is dead wrong.
    Miramar must be put into districts an heres why. The city made insane agreements with all the marginal developers who screwed all the home owners in Miramar.

    First the districts:
    441 to island drive #1
    Island Drive to Douglas Road #2
    Douglas Road to Red Road #3
    Red Rd to the west side I-75 #4
    West side of I-75 to US27 #5 It must be 5 as we need an odd number of commissioners.
    #2 Rule The commissioner must reside in that district no PO boxes allowed.Residential proof is a Florida Drivers License.Or State issued ID card…

    Ever wonder why there are city wide districts? The real unspoken truth is the mayor plus the 2 candidates for mayor are from west of Flamingo Road the 10 folks running for 2 seats 9 are from west of Flamingo Road. 1 Existing commissioner is from central Miramar,as is 1 candidate.
    So in the minds of existing politicians status quo must be maintained…Look at it this way areas 1-4 home values are in the 100 to 125,000 dollar value most homes in area 4 and 5 are in the 300,000 to 1/4 million dollar range. The central portion of the city has to pay for there own street lights anyone else have to in Miramar? Central Miramar the lakes have to be maintained by the city or by the hoa its a screw ball arraignment…..lots more to come