Qualifying Period for Doral Elections ends July 28th
By: María Alejandra Pulgar
Something that has not stopped during the COVID-19 pandemic is National Politics. The election process in the US continues. Schedules have been followed, with the exception of certain dates and places for the Republican and Democratic National Conventions, which were modified taking into consideration health and safety measures related to the pandemic.
The Democratic National Convention is scheduled to take place between August 17 and August 20 in Wisconsin, and the Republican National Convention is planned for a week later in Charlotte, North Carolina with the main events and speeches taking place in Jacksonville, Florida.
Presidential preference elections in Florida took place in March for the Democratic Party, as President Trump is the incumbent representing the Republican Party for the general election in November 3rd. However, there are still a group of positions, partisan and non-partisan, that are up for election this August 18th, with Early Voting in Miami-Dade taking place from August 8 to August 15th.
The steps voters need to follow are well documented and easily available. Below we include the information needed for registering, changing party affiliation, requesting an absentee ballot or voting early and also the details of the positions that are up for election in Miami-Dade County on this opportunity.
Important Dates and requirements
Registration to vote in Florida is an easy process. The requirements are: being an American Citizen born or naturalized, 18 years or older, and a Florida resident. It can be done online at RegisterToVoteFlorida.gov, or at a Florida Driver’s License, Tax collector or Vote registration offices, providing a valid Florida License.
It can also be done by mail or in person filling out a form that can be found here https://dos.myflorida.com/elections/for-voters/voter-registration/register-to-vote-or-update-your-information/ Those options can be used as well to update registration information, such as party affiliation, or change of address that has an impact on the districts where the elector has opinion and the precincts where he will vote. It means that if a new resident of Doral does not update his address on time then he would not be able to vote for Doral Council members in November.
Applications for vote-by-mail ballots for the November elections can be made before September 19th at https://www.miamidade.gov/global/service.page?Mduid_service=ser1512065909614490. The request of mail ballots ended July 16th for the Primaries.
The deadline to update information for the August 18 primaries was July 20th, but citizens have chance to register or update information for the November general elections by October 15th.
Which positions are up for election?
Florida is a closed primary state. It means that partisan positions can only be voted by party members. However, many other non-partisan positions are voted on Primary Elections, therefore all electors regardless of party affiliation should take the time to print out their sample ballot, be informed on which positions are being voted and research their candidates to make an informed decision. A good resource to begin that research is https://ballotpedia.org/Main_Page.
Voters registered in Doral will vote for the following positions:
- Non Partisan:
- State Attorney, Circuit 11
- Judges Circuit 11th , Groups 55, 57, 65, 67 and 75
- County Judges, Groups 9 and 24
- Miami-Dade County Mayor primary: there are six candidates. If one of them gets 50% of votes then there is no need for second round in November. Mayor Carlos Gimenez is ending his second term this year and the position is term limited.
- County Property Appraiser: candidates are incumbent Pedro J. Garcia and Marisol Zenteno.
- School Board Member District 5: Candidates are Mara Zapata, Jaime Petralanda, Michel Diaz Suarez and current Doral Vice Mayor Christi Fraga.
- Republican: only registered republicans will see these options on their ballot, in addition to the non-partisan positions
- Republican Candidate for State Representative District 105 in General Election
- Two State Executive Committee representatives (a man and a woman, separate vote)
- Two County Executive Committee representatives – District 5
- Democrat: only registered democrats will see these options on their ballot, in addition to the non-partisan positions.
- Democratic Candidate for State Representative District 105 in General Election
Qualification for Doral Elections ends July 28th
Elections for the City of Doral will take place November 3rd along with the general election. However the process already started and the qualification period for interested candidates ends July 28th.
The positions open for election in Doral are Mayor, Council Seat 1 and Council Seat 3. Incumbent Mayor Juan Carlos Bermudez has already registered and qualified for running for reelection, as well as Councilwoman Claudia Mariaca for Seat 1. Vice Mayor Christine Fraga ends her second term this November and out of three candidates running for her seat only Alberto Chavez and Oscar Puig-Corve have already qualified.
At the moment of closing this edition candidates Juan Carlos Esquivel and Victor Camara have yet to complete the qualification process.
The importance of registering and voting cannot be stressed enough. It is a right and a duty, moreover on these complicated times for our country where the opinion of every caring citizen counts.
For more information and details about the elections process you can visit the site of the Florida Department of Elections at https://dos.myflorida.com/elections/for-voters/ and the Doral elections webpage https://www.cityofdoral.com/government/city-clerk/election-information/