Raul Martinez Re-elected Despite his 1991 Conviction for Taking Money and Land in Exchange for Zoning Favors (Flashback 1993)
|Who is former Hialeah Mayor Raul Martinez? In 1993, these were the news about Raul Martinez.
(Note: First part of the article is about former Mayor Steve Clark. Scroll down for news about Raul Martinez. Bold fonts added.)
EX-MAYOR OF MIAMI GETS HIS JOB BACK
November 11, 1993
MIAMI, Nov. 10— A 69-year-old glad-handing politician who was Mayor in the 1960’s won the job back on Tuesday in a runoff election as voters rejected a Cuban-born City Commissioner’s appeals to Hispanic solidarity.
The former Mayor, Steve Clark, had 24,097 votes, or 59 percent, to 17,060, or 41 percent, for the City Commissioner, Miriam Alonso.
Mr. Clark led the six-candidate mayoral field on Nov. 2 with 45 percent of the vote to 39 percent for Ms. Alonso, 52. She had urged Hispanic voters to keep the Mayor’s post as “a Hispanic seat.”
The incumbent, Xavier Suarez, who was elected in 1985, becoming Miami’s first Cuban-born Mayor, endorsed Mr. Clark and criticized Ms. Alonso’s emphasis on ethnic pride. Mr. Suarez had chosen not to seek re-election, saying he wanted to spend more time with his family and law practice.
Mr. Clark was Mayor from 1967 to 1970. During his tenure he was criticized for seeming to devote most of his time to ribbon-cuttings, parades and festivals. He was then elected Mayor of Dade County . In his two decades with Dade County, Miami’s political power shifted from white to Hispanic residents, who today make up about 43 percent of the city’s eligible voters.
In his campaign this fall, Mr. Clark drew on years of good will and, trying to distinguish himself from his opponent, said he had always served all ethnic groups.
The mayor’s job carries a $5,000 annual salary and little executive power, but it is a visible post and is regarded as prestigious. Mr. Clark is a registered Democrat and Ms. Alonso a Republican, but the election was nonpartisan. Felon Re-elected
In neighboring Hialeah, Mayor Raul Martinez, who is facing 10 years in prison after being convicted on Federal corruption charges, was barely re-elected to another four years in office.
Mr. Martinez had 14,540 votes to State Representative Nilo Juri’s 14,267 in the nonpartisan race for the $75,000-a-year post. Hialeah is Florida’s fifth-largest city with 188,000 people.
Mr. Juri mentioned the possibility of a recount but said, “I’m going to let time prove to the people that I was right.”
He had urged voters to rebuke Mayor Martinez and not risk wasting their vote for a convicted felon. The Mayor, who is free on bond, has said he will be exonerated on appeal.
Mayor Martinez, who was first elected in 1981, was convicted in 1991 on Federal charges of taking money and land in exchange for zoning favors. Sentenced to 10 years in prison, he has remained free on bond and has retained his civil rights while appealing.
Mr. Martinez, 44, a Democrat, urged voters to vindicate him against charges that he said had been politically motivated. Mr. Juri is a Republican.