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Philip Levine endorses Alan Cohn for Congress

Cohn is grabbing endorsements ahead of the Florida primary in August.

Former Miami Beach Mayor and 2018 Democratic gubernatorial candidate Philip Levine endorsed Alan Cohn Tuesday for Florida’s 15th Congressional District.

Cohn is running for the Democratic nomination to replace Republican incumbent Ross Spano. Cohn faces Rep. Adam Hattersley in the primary.

“Alan Cohn has never been afraid to hold the powerful accountable, fight for working families, and an economy that works for everyone. His work as an investigative reporter has had tremendous impact from Tampa to Tallahassee to Miami Beach where he exposed a fraudulent charity claiming to support the families of fallen police officers,” Levine said. “It’s never been more important to have a representative in Congress with those skills and experience and that’s why I’ll be helping to elect Alan Cohn to Congress in the FL-15.”

Levine has made millions in the cruise line industry. He founded and serves as CEO of Royal Media Partners, the exclusive onboard media partner for Royal Caribbean Cruises.

Levine served as Miami Beach Mayor from 2013 until 2017 before running unsuccessfully for Governor. Despite his third placed finish in the race, Levine made a name for himself statewide After dumping nearly $30 million of his own money into his gubernatorial campaign, Levine could also be a potential big donor for Cohn.

“I am honored to have the support of Mayor Levine in our campaign for Congress. Mayor Levine has been an important voice on several issues from creating climate change infrastructure to aiding Puerto Rico in their recovery efforts. I look forward to having his help and guidance on the campaign trail,” Cohn said.

Cohn has also collected endorsements so far from former U.S. Senator and former Gov. Bob Graham, his daughter, former Congresswoman and one-time Levine foe Gwen Graham. Cohn also has support from the Teamsters union, United Food and Commercial Workers Union and the Plumbers and Pipefitters Union.

The winner of the primary will have an interesting race against Spano, who has been at the center of 2018 campaign finance controversy stemming from illegal loans to his campaign. Friends loaned Spano money, which he then loaned to his campaign, a clear finance violation. Spano is under federal investigation for the mistake.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is using the campaign finance scandal to target Spano as one of its top takedown prospects this year. While the group hasn’t endorsed in the primary, it will no doubt be a force for good to whomever emerges victorious in the Democratic primary.

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for Patch.com and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a die-hard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics, including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and contentious issues surrounding transit. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also a devoted wife and mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder.

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