Democratic U.S. Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell is kicking her campaign into full gear with a Tuesday evening virtual kickoff event.
Mucarsel-Powell and other supporters joined together on Zoom to discuss her reelection efforts in Florida’s 26th Congressional District.
“Her story really is the story of so many of her constituents in District 26,” said state Rep. Javier Fernández, who is now mounting a state Senate bid.
Mucarsel-Powell spoke of her background growing up in Ecuador and how that’s given her perspective on President Donald Trump‘s foreign policy.
“It’s been very important to have my voice, and especially now with Trump making comments about meeting with [Nicolás] Maduro in Venezuela, disregarding the fact that he’s a narco-dictator and he’s been violating human rights.”
She also framed her contest as an important one in driving up turnout for Democrats in the region and throughout the state.
“Florida is the key state to winning the White House,” Mucarsel-Powell argued.
“We need to make sure that we work closely with the [Joe] Biden team — and I’ve already been doing that — so that we can deliver Florida.”
Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Giménez and Omar Blanco, the former head of Miami-Dade Firefighters Local 1403, are competing in the GOP primary for the chance to take on Mucarsel-Powell. That primary will take place on Aug. 18.
So far, Mucarsel-Powell has stayed ahead in the fundraising game over her potential Republican challengers. Mucarsel-Powell raised more than $740,000 in the first quarter of 2020. Giménez added more than $415,000, while Blanco collected a paltry $8,000.
Also joining Tuesday’s call were Miami-Dade Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava, United Teachers of Dade President Karla Hernandez Mats and Wendi Walsh of Unite Here Local 355
Mucarsel-Powell’s CD 26 covers parts of Miami-Dade County and Monroe County. Mucarsel-Powell also touched on the effect of COVID-19 in the region.
“In Miami-Dade County we are the epicenter, and it’s not exaggeration when I say that the lack of leadership and the negligence by our Governor and by other elected officials — not all, but some — has really brought us to this point.”
Mucarsel-Powell won the seat from Republican U.S. Rep. Carlos Curbelo by 2 percentage points. The DCCC placed Mucarsel-Powell in its Frontline Program, which sends resources to potentially vulnerable House Democrats.