Former U.S. Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart endorses Carlos Curbelo in CD 26

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Longtime U.S. Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart announced his endorsement of Carlos Curbelo in Florida’s 26th Congressional District.

The 59-year-old Diaz-Balart served the Florida House of Representatives from 1986 to 1989, the state Senate from 1989 to 1992 and 18 years in Congress, representing the Miami-Dade region.

Curbelo is the favored Republican to unseat incumbent Democratic Rep. Joe Garcia, who continues to fend off accusations his staff was involved in absentee ballot fraud. Garcia’s Chief of Staff was convicted for absentee ballot fraud in 2013 and his campaign remains under FBI investigation.

Florida’s 26th Congressional District covers both southwestern Miami-Dade County and all of Monroe County.

“Carlos Curbelo will be a great Member of Congress,” said Diaz-Balart in a statement released Monday. “He is extremely talented and is a man of profound integrity. His experience and integrity will serve our community well in Congress.”

Since 2010, Curbelo has served on the Miami-Dade County School Board.

“Lincoln Diaz-Balart is one of the great role models for honorable public service. He has dedicated many years of his life to the effective representation of our community and to the cause of freedom throughout the world,” said Curbelo. “Even today, he continues his public service as a private citizen. I am deeply grateful for his support.”

In endorsing Curbelo, Diaz-Balart joins former Gov. Jeb Bush, U.S. Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Mario Diaz-Balart, as well as other Republican leaders.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.