Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Peter Adrien is the first judge to draw opposition for the 2010 judicial elections with two lawyers filing to run against him.
Coral Gables attorney Jeffrey David Swartz filed Tuesday and Miami attorney Samantha Ruiz Cohen filed for the same seat Wednesday.
Swartz, an attorney with Miller Kagan Rodriguez & Silver, was a county court judge from 1994 until he was unseated in an election by Miami-Dade County Judge Ada Beatriz Pozo. Swartz made headlines in 2006 when he made a last-minute gambit for Circuit Judge Israel Reyes’ seat, betting Reyes would be elevated to the 3rd District Court of Appeal before election day and he would take the seat by default. Reyes was not picked, and Swartz dropped out of the race.
Swartz, who does legal malpractice defense, said the logic behind running against Adrien “is simply that his performance on the bench to date has left a lot to be desired.”
Adrien said: “I’m not sure what he’s referring to. I haven’t been rude to anybody.”
The black judge said he possibly drew opposition because of his race and noted only 11 of Miami-Dade’s 123 judges are black.
“We come from humble means,” he said. “We’re going to be targeted because of our race.”
Cohen is of counsel with Bennett Aiello Cohen & Fried, is a former prosecutor and teaches constitutional law as an adjunct political science professor at Florida International University. She did not return calls seeking comment.