Best of Miami 2018: Best Politician
courtesy Raul Valdes-Fauli

Best of Miami 2018: Best Politician

Miami New Times' annual Best of Miami issue lands online this morning. For hundreds of our staff's picks on the finest places to eat and drink and the most notable people and personalities who defined South Florida over the past year, check out the full issue.

Here's a quick preview of our pick for Best Politician: Coral Gables Mayor Raul Valdes-Fauli.

In the weeks following the Parkland massacre, political talk was cheaper than Donald Trump's suits. As Republicans offered "thoughts and prayers" (and not much else), plenty of Democrats rallied for new gun restrictions without ever taking a risk to actually change anything.

Then there was Coral Gables Mayor Raul Valdes-Fauli. Not only did he quickly propose a complete assault weapons ban in his town — knowing full well that an onerous state law passed by the NRA-funded Tally GOP could mean getting tossed out of office and opening his city up to huge fines — but he also didn't mince words about why he was willing to risk it. Valdes-Fauli called gun-coddling Republicans "prostitutes" who "sold themselves to the NRA."

His proposal failed on a narrow vote, but he later signed his city onto a lawsuit to challenge Florida's law against local gun restrictions. In the meantime, he says he won't shy away from fighting the gun lobby.

"This is a matter of principle," he said in an interview after the vote on the proposal. "Somebody has to take a stand."

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