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Roll Call New Member Profiles: 113th Congress
  • Election: Defeated Rep. David Rivera, R
  • Residence: Miami
  • Born: Oct. 12, 1963; Miami Beach, Fla.
  • Religion: Roman Catholic
  • Family: Divorced; one child
  • Education: Miami-Dade Community College, attended 1982-84; U. of Miami, B.A. 1987 (politics & public affairs), J.D. 1991
  • Career: Engineering and design firm executive; political activist; Cuban advocacy organization director
  • Political highlights: Florida Public Service Commission, 1994-2000; Miami-Dade County Democratic Party chairman, 2007-08; Democratic nominee for U.S. House, 2008, 2010; Energy Department minority impact director, 2009-10

Joe Garcia, D
Fla.-26

Joe Garcia’s constituents in the new 26th District can expect him to defend Democratic policies on jobs and health care while working to protect the Everglades and reinvigorate Latin America policy.

Though he supports the 2010 health care overhaul, Garcia wants to close what he calls “glitches” in the law and contain rising Medicare costs. On the jobs front, Garcia argues that Congress must put Americans back to work by spending more on infrastructure while borrowing costs are low.

A former Energy Department appointee, Garcia says energy policy should address “how to make our country work better with less.” He supports the development of renewable energy and opposes offshore drilling, which he believes threatens the Everglades as well as agriculture and commercial fishing in the district.

A longtime political activist in Florida’s Cuban community, Garcia envisions a “calibrated” Cuba policy that, while advocating the release of all political prisoners, lifts existing bans on people-to-people contact, which he argues will promote American interests and values. He also supports greater engagement with Latin America, having supported free-trade agreements with Colombia and Panama for their job-creating potential. “For too long we’ve let others invest there . . . without us playing a role,” Garcia says.

Garcia says he would be a good fit on the Energy and Commerce Committee because of his prior experience with federal and state energy policy.

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