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Mystery robocall about Hialeah prompts backlash

Days before last week’s Miami-Dade mayoral election, some county voters answered the phone and heard a woman’s recorded voice sneering about the county’s most Cuban enclave: Hialeah.

Five times she said it. Hialeah.

To outsiders, it was meant to set off not-in-my-backyard alarm bells. To proud Hialeahns, it felt like a slap in the face.

“Irresponsible development, traffic congestion and noise, backroom deals and illegal gambling — is that what we want in our neighborhood? Of course not,” the unidentified voice said. “We aren’t Hialeah. Nor do we want to be.

“Let’s stop Hialeah’s Robaina from importing his brand of shady politics to our neighborhood.”

Nobody’s taking responsibility for the mysterious robocall, which ignited a firestorm of criticism on Spanish-language media and prompted mayoral candidate Julio Robaina the former mayor of Hialeah, to demand an apology from his opponent, Carlos Gimenez.

Gimenez flatly denied having any knowledge of the call, which was ostensibly paid for by the Committee for Honest Reform, a third-party political group. But the head of the committee said Friday he had nothing to do with the call and that it was put out without his authorization.

It’s a risky move, picking on Hialeah. Full story here.