Hialeah Mayor Carlos Hernández says he will support former Miami-Dade County Alex Penelas as Penelas pushes to return to that office in 2020.
Penelas previously served as County Mayor from 1996-2004. He’s one of seven candidates competing in the 2020 contest to replace term-limited Mayor Carlos Giménez.
“In difficult times, we realize the importance of having true and proven leaders in our community who focus on uniting, rather than dividing us,” Hernández said in a Tuesday statement.
“Leaders who know exactly what steps they must take to help us overcome the crisis we are living through, both in terms of health and the economy. That leader is Alex Penelas and that is why he has my support, my family’s, and the support of the great community of the City of Hialeah, to become the next mayor of the County.”
Hialeah is one of the most populous cities in the state and is home to a sizable Hispanic community which could play a large factor in the 2020 race.
“Hialeah holds a special place in my heart. Not only because it was where my parents decided to live after fleeing Cuba or because it was where I was born and raised, but also because this is where I started my political career,” Penelas added.
“As such, having Mayor Hernández’ support is a great honor. The Mayor has proven to be a very effective and conscientious leader for his residents, particularly during the coronavirus pandemic, when so many people have needed resources and aid.”
Penelas is competing in the mayoral contest against Carlos Antonio De Armas, entrepreneur Monique Nicole Barley, County Commissioners Esteban “Steve” Bovo, Daniella Levine Cava and Xavier Suarez, and real estate agent Ludmilla Domond.
The Miami-Dade County mayoral election will take place alongside Florida’s primary elections Aug. 18. If no candidate receives a majority of the vote — a high likelihood in the seven-person field — a runoff between the top two candidates will be held during the Nov. 3 general election.