Luther Campbell, the former 2 Live Crew frontman who has been waging a grassroots campaign for the mayor's office in Miami-Dade, Florida, lost his electoral bid yesterday, coming in fourth place in an 11-man race. Julio Robaina and Carlos Gimenez forced a run-off election that will take place next month, drawing 34 percent and 29 percent of the vote respectively.
Campbell, who drew 20,663 votes, earned 11 percent of the vote-- a relatively small minority, but the most of all candidates who claimed no prior government experience. Robaina is the former mayor of town Hialeah, and Gimenez is the former county commissioner. Marcelo Llorente, a former state legislator, came in third.
The former leader of the notorious hip hop group attracted national media coverage with his campaign, which many detractors dismissed as a publicity stunt. But the life-long Miami native told CNN in an interview that he was "dead serious."
Some elements of Campbell's platform were predictably left of the field, including his proposal to legalize small quantities of marijuana and impose a new tax on the adult entertainment industry. But all-in-all, the hip hop veteran said that he was able to draw $12,000 in campaign contributions.
Though his mayoral hopes were dashed yesterday, Campbell said that he wouldn't give up, and planned to run in the general election next year.
“This is just an appetizer. This is just the beginning,” he said. "We can still run and win this thing in 2012."
The winner of the runoff will replace the recently recalled mayor Carlos Alvarez, and serve out the remainder of his term.
(Photo: ASSOCIATED PRESSAP)