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Miami-Dade mayor: Police union foe missed calling as actor, could play Tony Soprano

@PatriciaMazzei

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez took an opportunity Sunday to poke at his political foe, Police Benevolent Association President John Rivera.

WPLG-ABC 10 political reporter Michael Putney asked Gimenez on This Week in South Florida about Rivera, who in an interview last week blamed the mayor for standing in the way of compromise with labor unions on unpopular benefit and pay concessions.

"No one in county government is allowed to m ake a decision with us other than him," Rivera said. "There's no compromising with this administration."

Gimenez -- perhaps still smarting about Rivera's appearance at a town-hall style meeting on the budget in which he boasted incorrectly that the union had unearthed $52 million in the county budget -- responded that Rivera had "missed his calling" as an actor.

"The problem with Mr. Rivera is his tactics," Gimenez said. "He goes out, makes these outrageous accusations all over the place.

"Actually, he missed his calling. He needs to go to Broadway. He needs to go on the screen. He's a great actor," the mayor continued. "Probably he could play Tony Soprano, you know. He could do that."

Gimenez compared Rivera to "the boy who cries wolf, except in this case, there's never been a wolf."

"I don't get along with people like that. I'm a very reasonable person. If you try to basically bully me, you're basically going around it the wrong way," the mayor said. "I'm not going to succumb."

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