Mike Grieco wins pro-LGBTQ group’s endorsement for Miami Beach Mayor
Like outgoing Mayor Dan Gelber, Mike Grieco would bring state lawmaking experience to the Miami Beach Mayor's office. Image via Florida Politics.

Grieco is one in a four-person field qualified to run for Mayor.

Former Democratic state Rep. Mike Grieco’s bid to be Miami Beach’s Mayor got the nod from an LBGTQ rights organization — even after an incident involving a loaded gun.

Grieco won SAVE Action PAC’s endorsement for the Nov. 7 General Election over three other candidates: Former Miami Beach City Commissioner Michael Góngora, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission lawyer Steven Meiner, and former HBO and MTV executive Bill Roedy.

Orlando Gonzales, SAVE’s executive director, said the gun incident that led Roedy to demand Grieco withdraw from the race, did not weigh that heavily on the SAVE members deciding on the endorsements.

A bag belonging to Grieco — and containing a loaded Glock 43 handgun — was left unattended at South Pointe Park dog park and turned into police. Grieco, who has also served as a Miami Beach Commissioner, later told the Miami Herald that the incident “shouldn’t have happened.”

Gonzales said Grieco’s past advocacy for LBGTQ issues elevated him above the other candidates, however. He’s pushed for legislation against conversion therapy, that seeks to break down a person’s LGBTQ identity, and argued against a recent spate of bills targeting the LGBTQ community.

Most recently, Grieco went before the Miami-Dade School Board and urged them to recognize October LGBTQ History Month, which the board ultimately nixed for this year.

“He was one of the very few people who went up there as somebody currently running for office to do that, and we always need our allies in those moments, ” Gonzales said.

For Group 4 Commissioner, the pro-LGBTQ rights PAC is also endorsing Tanya Katzoff Bhatt, a small business owner and community board member, over Andres Asion, also a small business owner and community board member.

And, in Group 5, SAVE gave its nod to Mitch Novick, a real estate business owner and community board volunteer, over David Suarez, a skincare business executive, who also serves on the board of the Miami Beach Visitor and Convention Authority.

The Group 6 seat on the Miami Beach City Commission is also up for grabs, but SAVE opted not to endorse either Joe Magazine, a finance professional, now serving on the Miami Beach Planning Board, or Marcella Novela, an arts advocate and business owner.

A majority of the panel could not agree on which one of them would be an advocate for the LGBTQ community, Gonzales said.

Anne Geggis

Anne Geggis is a South Florida journalist who began her career in Vermont and has worked at the Sun-Sentinel, the Daytona Beach News-Journal and the Gainesville Sun covering government issues, health and education. She was a member of the Sun-Sentinel team that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the Parkland high school shooting. You can reach her on Twitter @AnneBoca or by emailing [email protected].


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