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Dade battle royale is official: Flores joins fray

Miami Republican State Rep. Anitere Flores announced this morning that she's running for Sen. District 38, held by termed-out Sen. Alex Villalalobos. She'll face fellow Miami Republican House members David Rivera and Marcelo Llorente in what's likely a down-to-the-wire Republican primary.

Flores has a big advantage: Her house district is completely within 38. She says she has 33 percent of the voters, compared to Llorente's 12 percent and Rivera's 9 percent. At the very least, the numbers show she's done her homework. Also, Flores is the only woman in the race.

"I have the majority of these voters in my district. They trusted me for four years,” said Flores. “This is going to be a ground game won in the hearts and homes and neighborhoods like Westchester, Kendall and Fontainebleau.”

Rivera's advantage: he has loads o cash in the bank and strong name ID. He's been shopping a poll showing he's the early favorite.

Llorente's plus: He has the backing of the incumbent, Villalobos, who has tried to ease him into the district's heart - the "abuelitas" (little old ladies) whom he credits for his narrow re-election in 2006.