But they did disagree on gambling, with Machado generally favoring it accompanied by social safeguards, and Zapata generally opposing it.
Machado, however, also went after Zapata on character questions, attempting to make an issue of an arrest that occurred when his 45-year-old opponent was a college student 20 years ago. Zapata, whose record was expunged, said he was arrested for purchasing anabolic steroids.
Most of the attacks came from shadowy, third-party political committees linked to the candidates’ allies.
Garcia pitched himself as the candidate of reform in his campaign to unseat Barreiro, who handily outperformed his opponent in fundraising. Barreiro stood fast by his support of the Marlins stadium, and during the campaign even ventured to say he would consider financing some renovations to the Miami Dolphins’ Sun Life Stadium.
The Marlins and the Dolphins contributed to his campaign and to third-party political committees backing him.
In fact, Barreiro scheduled his victory party at the new Batting Cage sports bar across the street from the new stadium, although the atmosphere was sedate as results trickled in.
But they perked up as Barreiro arrived after 10 p.m., applauding as he settled in to await final results.
“It’s a new location here in our district,” Barreiro said of the sleek sports bar. “It’s part of the redevelopment associated with the stadium.”
If reelected, Barreiro said, he will focus on the reconstruction of the Miami Beach Convention Center and expanding the county’s public transportation system.
“We should be able to expand Metrorail one mile at a time,” Barreiro said. “If we had done that 30 years ago, we would have 30 more miles of Metrorail.”
Garcia argued that Barreiro’s long tenure and what he characterized as his ineffectiveness and tendency to say little at commission meetings was a good argument for term limits, which he supported. He criticized Barreiro for not doing enough to redevelop Calle Ocho, to secure renovations for the aging convention center or upgrade public transit.
Miami Herald writers Elizabeth deArmas and Jessica De Leon contributed to this report.
A previous version of this article misidentified former state Rep. Juan C. Zapata's expunged arrest.