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Rep. Santiago welcomes his "Miami-Dade constituents"

Rep. David Santiago had some unexpected guests during Dade Days in Tallahassee.

The Republican lawmaker was stunned when South Floridians streamed into his tenth-floor office last week. The visitors from Miami said they were simply following signs posted around the Capitol inviting Santiago's "Miami-Dade constituents" to swing by.

One minor detail: Santiago doesn't have any Miami-Dade constituents. He's from Deltona.

The signs were a prank orchestrated by Danny Martinez, a fellow tenth-floor denizen and legislative aide to Rep. Manny Diaz Jr., of Hialeah. 

Santiago often gets mistaken for a member of the Miami-Dade Delegation.

"People think I'm Cuban and from Miami," he said, laughing. "I'm actually Puerto Rican and from New York."

Santiago, who considers himself an adopted member of the Dade Delegation, welcomed the South Floridians into this office anyway, he said.

"It was all in good fun," he said. "You have to have some fun during the process."