MIAMI - Commissioner Francis Suarez's quest to become mayor came to an end on the front steps of his Miami home.
The 35-year old said a series of mishaps in the campaign proved too much of a distraction for his family. The campaign was taking a toll on him and his now pregnant wife.
"This campaign was taking in a very negative tone, which is not what I enjoy," said Suarez. "It's not why I got into public service and it wasn't what my message was about."
The campaign suffered its latest blow last week when two aides pleaded no-contest to charges they submitted questionable absentee ballot requests.
Suarez, who was cleared of any wrong doing, said disappointing the incident didn't doom his candidacy.
"A campaign of this size is kind of a roller coaster ride. There are moment when you're up, and feel you can do no wrong, and there are moment when it seems no one can do any right," Suarez said.
Suarez, however, said his initial reluctance to fire a staffer over comments she made on social media proved more problematic than he expected.
In them, an administrative assistant tweeted:
"Dear constituents... Please get a life, a hobby, a lobotomy... Whatever."
Suarez said, "I've learned from some of the mistakes that have been made in the campaign. You know, I think it's something that is going to make me wiser as I continue on."
The commissioner also expressed disappointment in himself. Earlier this month, Suarez was blasted by the police union over a political ad supporting a teen graffiti artist who died after being tasered by police.
Suarez defended the ad while his rival and current mayor, Thomas Regalado, said the whole thing was in poor taste.
"Social media is a new dynamic in politics and it was something I was hoping would be a benefit, and I think it was in many ways, but it was also a detriment. Its just a learning experience," Suarez said.
Without Suarez in the race, it's expected that Mayor Regalado will be re-elected.
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