Rep. Ilena Ros-Lehtinen (R-Miami) became the first Cuban American ever to serve in Congress when she won a special election back in 1989 to replace the late Rep. Claude Pepper (D). After serving 35 consecutive years in the Florida House, Senate, and US Congress, becoming dean of the nation’s third-largest congressional delegation, Ms. Ros-Lehtinen will announce her decision not to seek a 16th US House term at a news conference later today.
Though the re-designed 27th District is the strongest Hillary Clinton district to elect a Republican to the House, the Congresswoman underscored that she had every confidence of winning again, and simply decided the timing was right for her to retire.
The 27th, which covers a large portion of the Miami metro area including Miami Beach, will yield a hotly contested campaign. In an open seat situation, it may well be the Democrats holding the inside track to convert the seat. Much more on this campaign will come as multiple candidates will soon be coming forward.
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