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Judge: Miami commissioner can't run a third time

Miami Commissioner Michelle Spence-Jones, who missed a chunk of time in office successfully battling felony charges, cannot run for a third term in November, a judge ruled Tuesday.

The decision came in a lawsuit filed by long-time political foe the Rev. Richard P. Dunn II. He contended that an opinion from the city attorney that Spence-Jones could run for a third time because she didn’t serve two full terms was flawed and unconstitutional.

Dunn said he was “grateful” and “humbled” by the ruling, issued by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Jorge E. Cueto. Then Dunn lashed out at the city attorney’s office.

“It appears the Miami attorneys were trying to find a loophole in the law to appease their boss,” he said.

City Attorney Julie Bru defended her position, and said the city will appeal.

“I continue to believe that the provision does have an ambiguity and that the opinion I issued is legally correct,’’ she said.

Spence-Jones’s attorney, Bruce Rogow, said she would appeal the ruling as well. The matter was argued at a hearing Monday.

“I’m impressed with the thoroughness and speed in which the judge acted,’’ Rogow said. “He did a good job of reading the charter and interpreting it, but it doesn’t mean he’s right.’’

More from Charles Rabin here.

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