Two of five seats on the Miami Board of Commissioners were up for election on Nov. 2. District 3 Commissioner Joe Carollo won re-election, and Christine King defeated District 5 Commissioner Jeffrey Watson. Watson was appointed to the position in November 2020 to serve the remainder of Keon Hardemon’s term.
Four candidates total ran for District 3, and seven ran for District 5.
Additionally, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez was re-elected. Though the election was officially non-partisan, Suarez is affiliated with the Republican Party. Seventeen of the 100 largest U.S. cities by population held general elections for mayor on Nov. 2. In total, 28 top-100 cities are electing mayors in 2021. Heading into election day, 63 top-100 mayors were affiliated with the Democratic Party, 26 were affiliated with the Republican Party, four were independents, six identify as nonpartisan or unaffiliated, and one mayor did not respond to inquiries about his partisan affiliation.
The Miami Herald described the relationship between the mayor’s and the city commission’s powers as follows:
“Miami’s executive mayor, elected citywide, is a mostly ceremonial position that comes with little legislative power. The mayor can veto legislation, which can be overridden by the five-person City Commission. The mayor can hire and fire the city manager, city government’s chief executive, though the commission can fire the manager, too. To push an agenda, Miami’s figurehead mayor has to convince commissioners to support their issues and promote their initiatives to the public.”