Joe Garcia Walks Away with Victory in First Head-to-Head Congressional Debate

Today, former Democratic Congressman Joe Garcia walked away with a victory against Republican Congressman Carlos Curbelo in the first head-to-head debate of the contest for the 26th Congressional District of Florida. The debate took place at the alma mater of both Garcia and Curbelo, and was moderated by fellow Belen alum and CBS News Anchor Tom Llamas.

"Each time lobbyist Carlos Curbelo is given an opportunity to talk directly to the people of South Florida, he delivers a set of talking points that do not match his record, said Javier Hernandez of the Joe Garcia campaign. "Whether it is joining Donald Trump in calling Social Security a Ponzi Scheme before voting to threaten the program, or leading the charge to roll back environmental protections that threaten Florida's water, Carlos Curbelo wants to hide the fact that his voting record matches Donald Trump's rhetoric."

In Congress, Garcia delivered for his district. He successfully cut student loan rates for our students, which have since dropped to their lowest point in 10 years. Joe was also an advocate for clean water and the environment, having secured $200 million for everglades restoration and an additional $2 million funding for water quality improvements. He was also successful in securing federal dollars for job training in South Florida and for local transportation projects.

Meanwhile, Curbelo has a record of votes that contradict the interests of this community. In Congress, Curbelo voted to cut millions from the Pell Grant program. Curbelo voted to repeal Obamacare and replace it with nothing. Had he succeeded women would be charged more than men for care and people with pre-existing conditions would be denied coverage. Curbelo, just like Trump, has called Social Security and Medicare a Ponzi Scheme and says the same about Medicare.