Trapeze man launches revenge mayoral campaign vs Daniella Levine Cava

La Alcaldesa Daniella Levine Cava, who announced her re-election campaign only two weeks earlier, has her first challenger already. Miguel “El Skipper” Quintero, a trapeze artist/teacher and creator of the Miami Circus YouTube channel, filed paperwork Tuesday with the county elections department about his new campaign account.

It’s not that he’s got a burning desire to serve the public. Quintero just wants to stick it to the mayor for not calling him back.

“Ultimately, I’m pushed into it because I’ve caught the county doing a bunch of illegal things, I’ve requested four meetings with my commissioner and the mayor to discuss these actions and I’ve been ignored,” Quintero told Ladra.

By “illegal things,” este loco means violations that he’s gotten on the trailer parked on his property and the county “denying permits” for his trapeze school, Quintero says. “They are retaliating against my first amendment activities.”

So, he’s going to retaliate against them by running for office.

Read related: Sabina Covo beats 12 others to win the special election in Miami’s District 2

Quintero lives in District 2 and said he had tried to contact former Commissioner Jean Monestime a bunch of times. But he hasn’t even called newly-elected Commissioner Marleine Bastien. Ladra told him he should. Monestime was a nice guy, but also a lame duck with no motivation to help him. Bastien needs constituents to re-elect her in four years.

“The damage is done. I’m running for mayor,” Quintero said. “”I’m going to have a full transparency campaign and an accountability campaign.

“People really believe that Miami is a Banana Republic. I plan to film the whole process for my YouTube channel.”

That’s the other reason he is running. It’s content. His channel, Miami Circus, has both trapeze and government videos. Very appropriate.

Quintero’s videos are pretty good. Ladra particularly liked one about how difficult it is for the public to participate in county commission meetings.

He might sound a little delusional about the race, but the Dade Christian graduate (class of 1997) has one really good idea.

“Once I win the election, I’m going to put a live camera stream in the office, because it’s the people’s office.”

Can we do that part anyway? The live stream? Alcaldesa?

“I’m going to show people that they don’t always have to pick between the lesser of two evils. Regular people can run for office,” Quintero, 44, said.

He’s the guy who, in 2018, chased down an arsonist that set a doormat on fire. First, he pulled out the doormat before it could catch the house on fire, possibly saving lives. Then he went after the firebug and held him until police arrived.

What about fundraising? The mayor is going to have a war chest.

“If you’re creative, you know how to get the exposure you need.”

Quintero says the county wants him to tear down part of his house because it was built without permits in 2001. He bought it in 2020 and says they only went after him after he started filming officials who came after him for his trapeze school, which he says is completely legal.

“Miami-Dade County thinks they’re above the law,” he says, sounding a little neurotic. “I like the mayor a lot. She’s a very nice lady. But she never gave me that meeting. She never addressed what was going on. She just had her people put me off to the very people that were violating my rights.

“Miami-Dade is where the constitution goes to die,” Quintero said.

Oooooh, this is going to be fun. If Quintero stays in it. He says he’ll drop out of the race for $15 million if the mayor fires everyone involved in his violations. “Then, maybe I’ll consider not running.”

Immediately, he changes his mind.

“Nah. I’m running,” Quintero says. “I’m going to expose them all.”