Comedian Steve Berke Running for Miami Beach Mayor Again, Raising Cash With Kickstarter

Categories: Politicks

Photo by George Martinez
In 2011, he brought the Sexy Sax Man to a city commission meeting, pot decriminalization to the debate, and a surprising 23 percent of voters to the polls. Steve Berke, a comedian and YouTube marijuana advocate, came in second to incumbent Matti Herrera Bower in that campaign. Now, with Bower term-limited out of office, he is throwing his name back into the ring.

Berke announced his candidacy in typically unusual fashion, through a Kickstarter campaign meant to fund a documentary about his latest run for office.

See also:
- Steve Berke: Comedian for Miami Beach mayor

Berke says any money he raises for the documentary will be spent separately from his campaign finances. "I'm not worried about any conflicts arising," Berke tells Riptide.

Even though Bower is out, Berke will face a crowded field looking to take her seat. Two political veterans have already filed and raised significant cash: Commissioner Michael Góngora, who has reported more than $125,000, and Commissioner Jerry Libbin, who has raised more than $45,000.

A political newcomer, real estate investor Phil Levine, has also loaned himself $100,000 and already begun running TV adds. (A fourth candidate, David Hundley, has reported less than $500 in fundraising so far.)

Berke promises to focus this year's campaign on public corruption -- a timely topic in Miami Beach, where arrests have rocked the code enforcement and fire departments.

"I'll be pointing my camera directly at those who attempt to buy their way into power," Berke says. "This year is going to be open season on corruption."

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My Voice Nation Help

Bringing up corruption in Miami Beach will increase your enemies list.  Police, fire, code, building,  mayor, commissioners, city attorney, real estate developers and condo owners all want this stuff swept under the rug.  The only people who will come to Miami Beach will be criminals and money launderers.  Perhaps we have already reached that point. 

Steve Berke
Steve Berke

I've never been called a chauvinist in my entire life, and I've had a lot of media cover me with plenty of opportunities to call me one. In fact, I'm a huge equal rights activist, and I fight for not only women's rights, but gay marriage rights as well. What makes me a chauvinist? Because I have pretty girls in my videos? You, my friend, are a hater.

John Martin Shepherd
John Martin Shepherd

This guy is a fool, and a chauvinist, women-degrading wannabe. I almost walked out of his "bit" at the Improv in the Grove.

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