Miami-Dade County Hires Former Proud Boy Members to Serve as Poll Workers

Image by Michele Eve Sandberg

By Giselle Balido

November 1, 2022

The ex-participants in the white nationalist extremist group will be interacting with voters on Election Day.

The Miami-Dade Department of Elections requires its poll workers at the county’s 1,048 precincts to be fair and impartial in their roles. Yet a former member of Proud Boys— the far-right white nationalist extremist group— recently took to “Florida’s First” Telegram channel with an inflammatory message.

“That’s right, you heard it right, I’m working the poll. Cry some more, liberals. Enjoy your day,” former US Army captain Gabriel Garca filmed himself saying while wearing a “F— Biden” baseball cap, reports The Miami Herald.

Garcia, who is scheduled to stand trial on two felony counts and four misdemeanors for his role in the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection, has pleaded not guilty. However, the county on Monday said he was removed from the Election Day work schedule after Elections Supervisor Christina White learned he’d been charged with several felonies. 

“The Supervisor of Elections learned about Mr. Garcia’s indictment [on Oct. 11] and made the decision not to assign him to work on Election Day,” said Suzy Trutie, Miami-Dade’s deputy supervisor of elections. 

Christopher Barcenas, another former Proud Boy poll worker, who was seen on the Capitol steps on Jan. 6, but did not enter the building, has posted on social media about testifying before the US House Select Committee investigating the attack, while Nowell Salgueiro, also a former member, was not in Washington, DC, on Jan. 6. Trutie said that Barcenas and Salgueiro remain on the Election Day schedule because they haven’t been charged and convicted of a crime. 

A Designated Hate Group

The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated the Proud Boys as a hate group, and Miami Against Fascism, an anonymous Twitter account that denounces what it considers to be fascist threats, said that even if they have been disavowed by the national chapter, it’s not likely that any of the three could serve as impartial poll workers. 

In fact, said one of the anti-fascism group’s founders, the Proud Boys have a lengthy, clear history of violence and “rejecting election integrity.”


  • Giselle Balido

    Giselle is Floricua's political correspondent. She writes about the economy, environmental and social justice, and all things Latino. A published author, Giselle was born in Havana and grew up in New Jersey and Miami. She is passionate about equality, books, and cats.



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