Allegations of absentee ballot fraud. A candidate is accused of being a "bad mother." Mailers that dredge up sordid details of one candidate's ugly divorce while the opponent resurrects an incident involving porn on a state computer.
Just another election cycle in Miami-Dade, right?
Right. That's why Dr. Walter Richardson, chairman of Miami-Dade's Community Relations Board, is calling on candidates across the county to clean it up. In a letter sent to all candidates on Thursday, Richardson told candidates that "unethical campaign practices are destructive to the present and future of good community relations in our county."
With four days before the Aug. 14 primary, Richardson urged candidates to have a spirited debate over the important issues affecting Miami-Dade, and to "foster an atmosphere of mutual understanding, tolerance and respect."
As Dr. Richardson knows all too well, the 2012 campaign is just getting warmed up. There's a long, long way to go.
-- Steve Bousquet