Miami lawyer ends Supervisor of Elections bid after Donald Trump endorses opponent
Donald Trump. Photo via AP.

Donald Trump
She’s now also endorsing her former opponent.

Civil litigator Megan Pearl is out of the race for Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections (SOE), giving an unobstructed path to the GOP nomination to Miami Rep. Alina García.

Pearl cited an endorsement ex-President Donald Trump gave García as her reason. In a show of unity, she endorsed García too.

“Running for Supervisor of Elections … gave me the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn about the political process and meet many wonderful people. I want to thank those in the community who believed in my campaign and my vision for the office,” Pearl said in a statement.

“However, after a great deal of thought, I have decided to suspend my campaign and join President Trump in supporting Alina García for Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections. I remain committed to working to serve my community and look forward to new opportunities to do so.”

Megan Pearl promised, if elected Supervisor of Elections, to keep Miami-Dade’s voting processes “organized and credible.” Image via Beighley, Myrick, Udell, Lynne & Zeichman, P.A.

Pearl, a University of Miami Law School graduate who previously worked as a Florida House staffer and a law clerk in the 11th Judicial Circuit, filed to run for SOE on Feb. 8. García entered the race 12 days later to make the Republican Primary a three-person contest with Ruth Swanson, a 2020 election denier who withdrew in late March after raising just $4,400 in nine months.

Pearl collected $9,100 in less than two months of running. García dwarfed that sum, stacking $165,000 in less than a month and a half thanks to ample GOP support, including $13,000 from political committees controlled by incoming House Speaker Daniel Perez and $6,000 from Miami Sen. Alexis Calatayud.

Former President Donald Trump left no question about whom he supports in the Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections race this year. Image via Truth Social.

But the death knell for Pearl’s candidacy came April 30, when Trump took to his social media platform, Truth Social, and threw his sizable political influence behind García’s campaign.

“Alina Garcia has done an incredible job in the Florida State House, delivering lasting results for Florida families,” he wrote. “Now, Alina is running to be Miami Dade’s Supervisor of Elections, and will fight hard to secure our Elections and protect Voters’ Rights. Alina Garcia has my Complete and Total Endorsement — SHE WILL NOT LET YOU DOWN!”

García, a longtime political operative, is running for SOE after just one term as a state lawmaker. Just before filing for the race, she told the Miami Herald that she decided to forgo seeking another two years in the House at the urging of Florida GOP leaders, including U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and state party Chair Evan Powers, who both endorsed her campaign.

For now, Alina García has a clear path to the Nov. 5 General Election. Image via Alina García.

Miami-Dade voters abolished several constitutional officers — including SOE, Tax Collector and Property Appraiser — through the 1957 adoption of the county’s Home Rule Charter, which delegated their power to the Miami-Dade’s top executive official, now the county Mayor, who now appoints people to those positions.

But in 2018, Florida voters — including 58% of Miami-Dade voters — approved a constitutional amendment requiring every county in the state to elect those officers, as well as a Sheriff, by Jan. 7, 2025.

The county’s appointed SOE, Christina White, is not running to keep her job.

Democrats in the SOE race include former state Rep. Juan Carlos “J.C.” Planas, consultant and former North Miami Chief of Staff Willis Howard, and Arnie Weiss, a tech entrepreneur and children’s book author who filed paperwork to run Friday.

Planas raised more than $77,000 between when he filed in July and March 31, the last date for which campaign finance reports were due. An unaffiliated political committee called Friends of JC Planas, which is supporting his campaign, still holds $500,000 that mortgage loan originator Eduardo Fernandez gave to it in September.

Howard, a well-established political player in Miami-Dade who worked as the strategic consultant for Andrew Gillum’s gubernatorial campaign in 2018, collected $44,000 between April 2023 and April 2024.

He told Florida Politics last month that he is the only authentic Democrat in the race. Planas switched parties following Trump’s attacks on voter rights and lies that the 2020 Presidential Election was rigged.

The Primary Election is on Aug. 20, followed by the General Election on Nov. 5.

Jesse Scheckner

Jesse Scheckner has covered South Florida with a focus on Miami-Dade County since 2012. His work has been recognized by the Hearst Foundation, Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Society of News Editors, Florida MMA Awards and Miami New Times. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @JesseScheckner.


  • Shameful Florida

    May 29, 2024 at 6:56 pm

    A Republican activist with links to Florida’s Republican senator, Marco Rubio, and its governor, Ron DeSantis, has been indicted on charges relating to the 6 January 2021 storming of the US Capitol in an attempt to overturn Joe Biden’s presidential election victory.

    Barbara Balmaseda, 23, has been charged with five counts of being involved in the riot, including obstructing an official proceeding, knowingly entering and remaining in a restricted building, and engaging in disorderly conduct with intent to impede a session of Congress.

    The indictment against Balmaseda, a former director-at-large of the Miami Young Republicans, follows her arrest on the same charges last December, after an FBI investigation alleged she had been communicating with members of the far-right Proud Boys organisation, which pledges allegiance to Donald Trump.

  • Elvis Pitts "The Big Voice On The Right" American

    May 29, 2024 at 8:14 pm

    Good evening “Dook 4 Brains Leftys”,
    Its time for you, one and all, to stop being “Dook 4 Brains Leftys, and convert to “Sage Patriots”.
    Your party “The Dook-A-Crats” have totally made fools of themselves and you know it.
    Jump Ship now Dooks and throw in with us Sage Patriots.
    You “Dooks” are looking at a minimum of 40 years under Sage Repiblican Rule.
    1.) Continue to Suck. Loose, and be Nerds for the next 40+ years ( many of you will die of old age prior to the 40 years).
    2.) Ditch the Dook-A-Crat Loosers and join us Sage Patriots !!!!
    And remember ….. you are now One Of Us ….. One Of The Cool Kids ….. the only price of your admission to The Cool Kids Club is your Vote For Trump !!!
    Welcome aboard New Patriots now you will Stop Sucking and Start Winning !!!!
    Thank you,
    Elvis Pitts American

    • Speedy y SloPoke

      May 29, 2024 at 8:20 pm

      Elvis my Savant Genius Cousin, SloPoke, wants you to know that our mean old lefty neighbor, Miss Grundy, just read your above wisdom and jumped ship from D to R.
      Elvis if you can turn mean old Miss Grundy you can turn all Dooks into Patriots.
      Speedy and SloPoke and Miss Grundy

      • Elvis Pitts "The Big Voice On The Right" American

        May 29, 2024 at 9:08 pm

        Thanks Speedy and SloPoke,
        I think its Prime Time for Elvis Pitts American to bring our Nation together with “A FIRE-SIDE CHAT WITH ELVIS”.
        Good evening America,
        WELP ….. there you have it, if we converted Miss Grundy into a “SAGE PATRIOT” we already got you.
        So Welcome to all Newly Transitioning Sage Patriots !!!!
        Your one thing as a new Sage Patriot is so easy.
        Your one job as a Newby Sage Patriot is so easy.
        1.) VOTE TRUMP.
        At this time thats all you need to remember. After the election we will begin National Education for everyone of you Transitioning Sage Patriots to teach you:
        1. Truth, justice, snd the American Way.
        Everything else you need to know to finish your Transition into A True and Beloved SAGE PATRIOT !!!!
        SO IN CLOSING:
        All you Transitioning Sage Patriots have just one job.
        YOUR ONE JOB:
        VOTE TRUMP.
        We will take it from there.
        Thank you Beloved Transitioning Sage Patriots,
        Elvis Pitts American

        • rick whitaker

          May 30, 2024 at 12:37 pm

          earl= trump fan= ???

    • rick whitaker

      May 30, 2024 at 12:39 pm

      earl = trump fan = ???

  • Home Rule Should Still Matter

    May 30, 2024 at 12:17 am

    It should be noted that if just Miami-Dade votes counted for the constitutional amendment, it would not have gone into effect since the 60% threshold was not reached.

Comments are closed.


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