A Natacha Seijas Supporter Snatches Name of Recall Committee

bennett-cody.jpg
Courtesy Eye on Miami
David Bennett and Stephen Cody shortly after a court hearing on Natacha Seijas' recall.
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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12 comments
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FloridaFan
FloridaFan

"hijacked Miami Voice's identity" ??What a phuking scumbag

John2604
John2604

It appears that Bennett either lied to your reporter or committed a felony by lying on his corporate application. His corporate application states the corporate purpose was to apply for grants. In his article he states to recall the Mayor.( Non profits can not be used for political purposes.) His corporate partner has a judgement of $512,196.68 levied against him (case # 08-1616GCS) and the address for the judgement is the same address as the new corporation

Stephen Cody, Esq.
Stephen Cody, Esq.

Sorry, John Collins. One of the permitted purposes for a not for profit corporation is "political". There is absolutely nothing wrong with what Dr. Bennett did.

UWillBeSued
UWillBeSued

501(c)(4) organizations are generally civic leagues and other corporations operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare, or local associations of employees with membership limited to a designated company or people in a particular municipality or neighborhood, and with net earnings devoted exclusively to charitable, educational, or recreational purposes.[19] Unlike 501(c)(3) organizations, 501(c)(4) organizations may lobby for legislation; they may also participate in political campaigns and elections, as long as campaigning is not the organization's primary purpose.[20]

Contributions to 501(c)(4) organizations are not deductible as charitable contributions. 501(c)(4) organizations are not required to disclose their donors publicly

Stephen Cody, Esq.
Stephen Cody, Esq.

Frank: What you left out was the fact that I was also Vanessa Brito's attorney. Does that create a connection between Brito and Seijas. Or how about the fact that I represented David Rivera and got the lawsuit attempting to toss him off the ballot thrown out of court? Doesn't that create same kind of interesting connection between Brito and David Rivera? Or that I got Bruno Barriero's opponent tossed off the ballot? Conspiracy to blow the Bruno recall attempt organized by me? Or what about my representation of the Florida House during the 2002 reapportionment cycle? Doesn't that connect Vanessa to Marco Rubio, Tom Feeney, and Johnny Bird. I've been doing election law matters for almost 30 years. The odds are pretty good that any given elected politician with an election law issue has called me. Leave the conspiracies to Fox News.

Alvarado1
Alvarado1

Steve is correct. He did tell me about representing Vanessa Brito and I should have included that in the post, noting that Miami-Dade politics makes for strange bedfellows. I apologize to you and to our readers for the omission. But to clarify, I didn't say there was a conspiracy going on here. I simply noted a very interesting coincidence and how extraordinarily lucky Bennett was to have been when he was harping on the phone about Michael Pizzi with the son of an attorney who just happens to be one of the top government lawyers in town and had, by gosh, even faced Pizzi as opposing counsel in a previous recall of Natacha Seijas. Talk about cosmic serendipity.

Miami Lakes Needs Truth
Miami Lakes Needs Truth

Mr. Alvarado,

There wasn't a day that went by that Pizzi wasn't doing something stupid in Miami Lakes. Haven't you seen the stories in the newspaper?. The odds are considerably improved when the Mayor is constantly exhibiting unethical behavior. As far a "lucky Bennett", I needed an appellate attorney in a government public records case. You have the evidence before you. If you can take off your blinders for one minute and be the journalist you strive to be you will realize that your defense of Mayor Pizzi is misplaced.

totally80s
totally80s

It's true. Just last week Pizzi went to the salsa bar at On the Border twice. TWICE I TELL YOU.

Jdr6
Jdr6

All it shows is that you are as slimy as the politicians you represent.

Totally80s
Totally80s

Is there anything more pathetic than politics in f@#$ing Miami Lakes of all places?

Vanessa Brito
Vanessa Brito

I'm shocked at the incredible lack of respect for a lawfully registered PAC with the Miami-Dade County Supervisor of Elections Office. I guess Miami Voice PAC will soon head back to court - this time as the plaintiff.

Benrojas
Benrojas

As first read at Eye on Miami on Monday.....

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