A Natacha Seijas Supporter Snatches Name of Recall Committee

A Miami Lakes resident who supports Natacha Seijas has hijacked Miami Voice's identity. On February 18, Dr. David Bennett, along with another Miami Lakes resident, incorporated a nonprofit organization bearing the same name as the committee seeking Natacha Seijas's recall. Vanessa Brito, chairwoman of Miami Voice the PAC, is crying foul.

"I'm not sure what their plans are," Brito said in an email this past Monday. "But I presume they will use the name of the PAC I represent to confuse voters."

Bennett says too bad. "She was negligent for not locking the name in," he explains. "What I did is completely lawful." The dentist adds he has no plans to collect donations or use Miami Voice for political purposes, except to raise funds to recall Miami Lakes Mayor Mike Pizzi, a Seijas foe whom Bennett claims is no good.

"I really want to auction the name off to the highest bidder so we can raise money for Pizzi's recall," the tooth extractor notes. "The people of Miami Lakes are fed up with him."

Bennett insists his nonprofit has nothing to do with Seijas's fight with the Miami Voice PAC, which was recently fined $890 for filing its last campaign finance report ten days late. And, he adds, the county commissioner is not involved with his planned recall of Pizzi.

"I wanted to recall him 12 months ago," Bennett says. "I approached Seijas and she told me that she doesn't believe in recall elections."

Yet for all the distancing he is putting between himself and Seijas, Bennett has one pretty darn interesting connection to the commish. The lawyer who represented Seijas in her lawsuit to stop her recall also represents Bennett in his legal skirmish with Pizzi and the Town of Miami Lakes. That attorney is Stephen Cody, whom Bennett hired last summer to appeal a lawsuit he lost seeking the release of the town's blind carbon copy email list.

Bennett insists it is a mere coincidence that Cody represents him and Seijas. The dentist explains he met Cody last year when he was doing dental work on the lawyer's son. "Steve was in my office when I got a call from a neighbor about something crazy Pizzi was doing," Bennett says. "Steve overheard me and told me about his history with Pizzi."

The dentist was also in the audience during Seijas's court hearings to stop the recall. He says he attended because he wanted to see what arguments Pizzi would present to keep Seijas's recall on the ballot. "So he could teach me what I need to know so I can do a successful recall of him," Bennett says.

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Francisco Alvarado was born in Nicaragua and grew up in Miami, giving him unique insight into the Magic City and all its dark corners. An investigative reporter with a knack for uncovering corruption, Alvarado made his bones as a staff writer at Miami New Times and remains in dogged pursuit of the next juicy story.