Where There’s Buzz…

   Miami media’s full of “buzz” about a possible Obama Administration job for Mayor Manny Diaz.  The New Times has blogged about a different potential post every day this week.  All the TV channels have mentioned the possibility.  And today, the Herald speculated about Mayor Manny’s DC prospects, quoting the Mayor as saying “It’s nice to be in the mix”.

   The problem with all this is, it appears based largely on “buzz” at City Hall.  Indeed, virtually every article I’ve read about Manny Diaz and the Obama Administration contains the word “buzz” (or City Hall being “abuzz”).  None of the lists of potential major appointees coming out of DC contains the Mayor’s name (AP & MSNBC update their list of appointment prospects daily– neither has listed Diaz).

   Diaz and his people could be trying to create a little buzz, of course.  Hizzoner is termed out of the Mayor’s job in less than a year.  A major appointive post in Washington would be a great place to park oneself while weighing a run for Congress/Senate, and the Obama folks will feel some pressure to appoint some Hispanics to major posts. 

   The Mayor, after announcing support of Hillary Clinton right before the January primary, did not come into the Obama fold quickly.  Indeed, he spoke at the Denver convention without having endorsed Obama (the Diaz camp argued that– as head of the US Conf. of Mayors– he was just trying maximize the group’s clout with both parties).  Still, once committed, Diaz proved to be an enthusiastic Obama advocate. 

   The buzz at Miami City Hall may not be the doing of Diaz or his minions.  One ex-Dinner Key aide suggests that Commissioners who want to be Mayor have an interest in talking up Diaz for a Washington appointment.  If he goes, the City Commission would name someone to fill out his term.  Both Tomas Regalado (an announced mayoral candidate for ’09) and Joe Sanchez (unannounced but interested, by most accounts) would love to have the chance to serve out Diaz’ term, and run next year a a sort-of incumbent.

   This ex-aide– who still follows city politics avidly– says another potential mayoral candidate is sniffing around.  That would be St. Sen. Alex Diaz de la Portilla, who will be term-limited out as of 2010.


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