Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera, a former Doral city council member and Republican, said she is seriously considering a bid for U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen's seat in 2018.
Rodriguez Aguilera was a council member from 2012 to 2014 when she lost to former councilman Pete Cabrera. She previously worked as the city's economic development director.
Rodriguez Aguilera owns Bettinara Enterprises, a company that assists people in understanding how government works. She also created a women's leadership certificate program which she teaches at Miami Dade College.
Democrats view Ros-Lehtinen's retirement as a chance to pick up a left leaning seat. Ros-Lehtinen, who did not vote for President Donald Trump, has often disagreed with her own party including her vote against the GOP health care plan.
Rodriguez Aguilera said she voted for Trump.
"I am a Republican -- I had to look at the choices," she said. "I voted for who I believed at that point was the person that I needed to vote for but I would like to consider the issues and problems that the community has. Money and economic development do not have a Republican or Democratic stamp on it."
Asked about the GOP health care plan that narrowly passed the House in May, Rodriguez Aguilera said she is still "studying the different options."
Other Republicans who have said they are running including former School Board Member Raquel Regalado and Miami Dade County Commissioner Bruno Barreiro. Maria Peiro, who ran against Ros-Lehtinen in the 2016 primary, is also running.
On the Democratic side, the candidates include state Rep. David Richardson of Miami Beach, state Sen. Jose Javier Rodriguez, Miami Beach commissioner Kristen Rosen Gonzalez, University of Miami academic adviser Michael Hepburn and Mark Anthony Person.