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Cafe con leche y politica

Img00032_2 TAMPA -- It's the Versailles of Tampa Bay, a seen-and-be-seen kind of place frequented by candidates and locals looking for a fix of strong Cuban coffee. Inside the West Tampa Sandwich Shop, 51-year-old Michael Diaz talked about the financial squeeze.

Diaz is a carpenter who used to run a fishing guide business but no longer can afford the fuel for his boat. He's got four kids. He's has been caring for his ailing mother, who died yesterday. "It's an ordeal,'' he said. "Life is not easy."

Diaz is a registered Democrat but he's leaning toward Republican John McCain because of his government experience.

"We have serious problems and we need a serious person to take care of them,'' he said. "I'm looking for someone who is going to give us great leadership."