Matt Lewis

Miami Voters Fire Mayor: A Harbinger of Things to Come?

Matt K. Lewis Senior Contributor

Tuesday’s stunning recall of Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Alvarez may well be a harbinger of things to come.

At the very least, it is worth paying attention to for a variety of reasons.

First, this was the second-largest recall based on population (only the recall of California Governor Grey Davis was larger).

Second, the margin of victory — 88 percent! — was frankly stunning.  What is more, more people voted in the recall election than in the general election.

And third, I’m told by a reliable source that the unions did everything they could to help Alvarez — and that Alvarez’s campaign even narrowly outspent the recall effort.

Might this portend what could come in 2012?  As NBC’s Chuck Todd noted at First Read,

“This recall embodies all of the frustration Americans are feeling right now — over the economy (which is not very good in South Florida) and how government works (Alvarez gave big pay raises to his staff). It’s a Petri dish for the country’s views on politicians. Everyone’s on a very short leash.”

The recall effort was bankrolled by Norman Braman, who once owned the Philadelphia Eagles.  After learning of the victory, Braman noted,

“County voters have demonstrated by their ballot that they are tired of unaccountable officials, of being ignored, and of being over-taxed in this very difficult recessionary time,’’ Braman said Tuesday night. “We’ve empowered the people of this county to take back the government and ask the government to be responsive to the people.”