A high-ranking former aide to Miami Congressman Carlos Curbelo just got caught participating in the Miami-Dade Republican Party Chairman’s out of control protests in Coral Gables earlier this week.
Kevin Marino Cabrera is a lobbyist at the Southern Strategy Group, whose Miami office consists of only he, Miami GOP Chairman Nelson Diaz — who planned the protest — and one other person.
My reporting ripped the story open when I obtained a copy of the Miami-Dade Republican Party’s official press release and an interview with Diaz, himself a former top staffer to Florida Senator Marco Rubio during his days in the state House.
Miami GOP Chairman just caught leading Proud Boys in attack on Democratic campaign office
Video from the hate group proves that they helped Miami’s top Republican attack a Democratic congressional campaign HQ.
Kevin Marino Cabrera’s biography from his lobbying firm highlights his establishment resume.
Kevin began his political career after many years in management and sales in the freight forwarding industry as a volunteer for Congressman Carlos Curbelo’s 2014 congressional campaign and subsequently joining the campaign as its Field Director. Kevin later served as the Director of Constituent Services in Congressman Curbelo’s district office. Kevin was then recruited to join Governor Jeb Bush’s Presidential campaign as the South Florida Director, while also assisting with Hispanic outreach in Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina. Most recently Kevin managed a Florida House campaign.
For his part, Congressman Curbelo vehemently denies any role in his party’s disastrous mob attack.
But Curbelo’s campaign staff worked hard to get the media to cover Shalala’s cancelled visit from California Democratic Congresswoman Barbara Lee, which Republican Party Chair Diaz cited to me in an interview as a reason for the protest’s manic tenor and hate group members in attendance.
Since then, he and his campaign communications director Johanna Rodriguez have removed nearly all of the references to stories about the attack on Shalala’s HQ since my story was published yesterday, highlighting that he was campaigning heavily on local media coverage, which painted the Democratic candidate as at fault for the mob scene, even though she cancelled the California Congresswoman’s ill-advised appearance.
This morning Rep. Curbelo tweeted two words in agreement with a conservative commentator slamming the Republican “protest” against Shalala’s campaign HQ.
Yesterday, right-wing website the Daily Caller also released a copy of the video depicting 50–60 Republicans trespassing into Donna Shalala’s Minorca Avenue congressional campaign office to confront House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi as she entered from the allway.
That led to Sen. Rubio posting a tweet this morning condemning his former aide’s “repudiation” mob against Pelosi, comparing it accurately to former Cuban dictator Fidel Castro’s street brawling tactics.
Shalala campaign pollster Fernand Amandi agreed with Rubio’s characterization of his own local party, making for a rare moment of bipartisanship in today’s fractured political landscape.
Even other Republican officeholders have joined in publicly condemning the Miami GOP Chairman’s failed leadership including a member of House GOP leadership wounded during the Congressional baseball shooting and another Republican Senator.
Many commentators on Twitter compared the Miami GOP “protest” to the “Brooks Brothers riot” during the 2000 election recount in Florida, which was a mob scene cooked up by a Republican legislator and carried out by Roger Stone and now-CPAC Chairman Matt Schlapp, whose wife Mercedes is a Trump White House Strategic Comms Director, along with a long list of GOP operatives and paid protesters. That Republican riot caused Miami-Dade County elections officials to cease recounting votes during the highly disputed election.
Miami GOP Chair Diaz issued an apology late last night, for getting caught, by blaming emotion for his failed leadership and collaboration with a hate group.
The consequences of Diaz’s actions are still unfolding, and numerous people who were inside the building or on the scene that day have contacted me noting that many of the GOP’s “protesters” were wearing brand new red MAGA hats, wondering who paid for those, and if they were paid for their attendance.