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Patrick Murphy wins Congressional Hispanic Caucus PAC endorsement in U.S. Senate race

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Treasure Coast area Democratic Congressman Patrick Murphy has received the endorsement from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus’ Building Our Leadership Diversity Political Action Committee (CHC BOLD PAC) in the race for U.S. Senate in Florida.

“We’re big fans of Patrick Murphy,” said California Congressman Tony Cardenas, chair of the CHC BOLD PAC. “We’re looking at his voting record and his passionate public service, and we know that he’s going to be a great representative, not only for the Hispanic communities across Florida, but for all American families.”

The CHC PAC applauded Murphy’s support for comprehensive immigration reform, making college more affordable and the push to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour as issues that resonated with their 27 members.

“He’s tireless, he’s a guy who has a lot of energy, and someone who can bridge a lot of gaps we have in this country,” added California Representative Juan Vargas.

Murphy called the endorsement “a big deal” for his campaign and said he was proud to have a vote of confidence from lawmakers who represent the Latino community around the nation.

When asked if caucus members were divided at all between deciding between Murphy and his main Democratic opponent, Congressman Alan Grayson, Cardenas said that Grayson didn’t even submit his name for a possible endorsement.

“As far as we can tell, Alan Grayson did not petition to be considered in our process, and Patrick Murphy did,” Cardenas said. “Everybody who is running for office at the federal level is well aware that the Hispanic caucus not only considers endorsing Hispanic individuals for Congress and U.S. Senate, but we consider people from all corners of the country, and Patrick Murphy put in his application, and he got unanimous support from our 27 members of the Hispanic caucus, and we’re proud to have endorsed him.”

Murphy said that he’s still unhappy that, as a member of the House, he didn’t get the opportunity to vote on the comprehensive immigration reform bill passed with bipartisan support in 2013. Then House Speaker John Boehner never brought the bill before his body. Murphy says he backs most of the provisions in that legislation, but maybe would prefer a shorter timeline than the minimum 13-year path to citizenship that the bill seeks.

“Whether I’m standing with President Obama’s plan for a responsible pathway to citizenship or working to pass comprehensive immigration reform, Florida families can count on me to be an outspoken advocate for our diverse Hispanic communities across the state,” Murphy said. “That’s why the strident anti-immigrant rhetoric from Donald Trump is so dangerous, and why the embrace of his policies and tone by my Republican opponents is so unacceptable.”

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Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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