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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Committee Helping Villalobos



That's the apparent goal of an electioneering communications organization that splashed noticeably with the latest round of campaign finance reports and has already sent out a flyer in Miami-Dade supporting state Sen. Alex Villalobos, R-Miami.

It's called "Citizens for Ethical and Effective Leadership" and it's spent $46,370 of the $137,000 it's raised with DRC Consulting, the firm owned by Miami lobbyist David Custin, a political consultant and stauch Villalobos ally.

The onetime presumed Senate president for 2008 got a whole new set of headaches when his votes to help kill class-size and voucher measures earned him a GOP primary challenger, Miami-Dade School Board Member Frank Bolanos.

But the committee has also spent a chunk of change ($25,000) with Penn Schoen & Berland Associates polling firm and it's biggest contributor is Florida Education Association ($50,000).

"That group is going to be help us promote positive education issues and smaller class size,'' said FEA spokesman Mark Pudlow. "They will be looking at candidates sympathetic to public schools. I don’t know about any specific candidates."

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 3:07pm]


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