Joe Garcia now in race for Rivera’s congressional seat

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Joe Garcia, a Democrat who for Congress in 2008 and 2010, announced in a video on his new campaign site that he will run against Republican Congressman David Rivera this year and signaled he will focus on investigations into Rivera’s finances, reports the News Service of Florida. “Our community is being neglected because our congressman is busier working on his legal defense and covering up his lies than serving his constituents,” Garcia says in the video. He faces a Democratic primary against at least one candidate: businesswoman Gloria Romero Roses, whose bid for the seat has already been dubbed an “emerging race” by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee — the elections arm of House Democrats. Despite state and federal investigations into Rivera’s finances, Democrats have missed out on drawing a higher profile candidate into the contest, especially since state Rep. Luis Garcia quit the race after a falling-out with the DCCC. Florida investigators confirmed last month that Rivera will not face state charges in their probe. Roses has also raised the investigations; in a response, Rivera’s campaign declined to engage but also slammed “false and negative campaign tactics” by Democrats.

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Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.