March 27, 2014 •
David Beckham Cleared by Miami-Dade Lobbying Inquiry
The Miami-Dade Commission on Ethics and Public Trust closed its inquiry into the lobbying activities of soccer star David Beckham, concluding he did not violate county lobbying law by failing to register as a lobbyist. In the summer of 2013, Beckham toured sites for a potential Major League Soccer stadium with Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and other county officials. Beckham and Mayor Gimenez also had dinner with the financier of Beckham’s proposed soccer venture.
The Commission cleared the site visits as a “meet and greet” function exempt from lobbyist registration rules, and other meetings with the mayor were characterized as the county lobbying Beckham to bring a soccer franchise to Miami. The Commission noted meetings with public officials do not necessarily constitute lobbying and determined Beckham was not lobbying Mayor Gimenez at their dinner meeting.
With the Major League Soccer plan gaining momentum, only individuals who are properly registered as lobbyists should be meeting with county officials to influence decisions in the matter going forward, according to the Commission’s report.
Photo of David Beckham courtesy of The Democratic Alliance on Wikimedia Commons.