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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Diaz-Balart brothers endorse Crist

U.S. Reps. Lincoln and Mario Diaz-Balart have endorsed Charlie Crist for U.S. Senate.

"Charlie Crist understands that freedom is under attack and it must be protected with clarity and firmness by the United States. He will be an effective Senator for Florida. I strongly support him," Lincoln Diaz-Balart said in a statement.

The support of the Diaz-Balart brothers should help Crist in two areas: becoming more familiar with U.S. policy in Cuba and Latin America and helping to neutralize the support that his opponent, Marco Rubio, has in the Cuban community in greater Miami. Crist and Mario Diaz-Balart, the younger of the two brothers, served together in the state Senate in the 1990s.

The brothers backed Bill McCollum over another prominent Cuban American, Mel Martinez, in the 2004 Senate race, though that came before Martinez entered the race.

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[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 4:50pm]

    

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