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Rep. Joe Garcia records robocall for Miami-Dade commission candidate

@PatriciaMazzei

In the feisty Miami-Dade County Commission contest between incumbent Lynda Bell and challenger Daniella Levine Cava, both candidates are now trumpeting support from members of Congress, in an attempt to persuade partisan voters to the polls on Tuesday.

On Thursday, Levine Cava's campaign revealed a new automated phone call that Congressman Joe Garcia recorded for the local race. Like Levine Cava, Garcia is a Democrat, though commission races are nonpartisan, and Garcia never mentions his party affiliation on the call.

"I can tell you that now, more than ever, we need Daniella," Garcia says on the call. "Daniella is prepared to lead our community with integrity and vision. I trust Daniella will deliver real results to South Dade because she is one of us and will fight for us."

Garcia goes on to invite listeners to the South Dade Regional Library early-voting site on Saturday to meet with him and Levine Cava and cast their ballots.

The robocall comes a day after Bell's camp unveiled a web ad with Republican Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen's endorsement.

Levine Cava supporters have privately questioned Ros-Lehtinen's move, noting that Bell opposed adding transgender protections to a county ordinance. Ros-Lehtinen has promoted LGBT rights.

Likewise, Bell backers are likely to point to Garcia referring to Levine Cava being "one of us" -- perhaps in reference to being a South Dade resident. Levine Cava moved into the district before filing to run for office, drawing accusations of being a carpetbagger. (Garcia, whose congressional district spans Westchester to Key West, didn't live in his district when he ran; he has since secured a Key West residence.)

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