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Rep. Michael Bileca gets ad love for challenged law banning hiring of firms tied to Cuba

No one was more vocal in praising a new Florida law prohibiting the state and local governments from hiring foreign-owned companies that do business in Cuba than Mauricio Claver-Carone, the executive director of the U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC.

Now the Washington D.C.-based Claver-Carone, through another entity, Cuba Democracy Public Advocacy, has paid for a spot on Miami Spanish-language radio lauding state Rep. Michael Bileca. The Miami Republican, who faces GOP challenger Geno Perez in the Aug. 14 primary, was one of the sponsors of the law.

There's no mention in the ad that the law is now tied up in court.

A Miami federal judge blocked the law, saying it is unconstitutional because states cannot set foreign policy. The state has appealed.

The suit was brought forth by Odebrecht USA, the Coral Gables-based affiliate of the Brazilian engineering and construction giant that was one of the law's primary targets.

The ad says Bileca "did not let himself be intimidated" when he filed the legislation, which also bans the hiring of companies with business ties to Syria. But the bill flew under the radar in Tallahassee this year, and firms that were directly affected, such as Odebrecht, had no idea that it would be passed until after a near-unanimous majority of legislators approved it.

"We are profoundly grateful to Rep. Bileca for his leadership and exemplary decorum," the ad says. "Call Rep. Bileca and say thank you for confronting economic interests that fight the regimes that keep the Cuban and Syrian people oppressed."