MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The race for the 27th Congressional District has well known TV journalist and Republican Maria Elvira Salazar running against Democrat Donna Shalala in a rematch from 2018, only this time, Shalala is the incumbent.

“I have been a journalist for 35 years. I know the topics very well. I have asked the tough questions. I can identify the politicians that are not telling the truth,” said Salazar

If elected, Salazar would go to Washington as a freshman law maker. Washington, is of course, a stage where Donna Shalala, the former president of the University of Miami, has been a player for years. She was Secretary of Health and Human Services for the Clinton Administration and later in charge of the Clinton Foundation.

“My experience in healthcare makes a difference in our community at this time. My experience also means I am not a freshman. I don’t need 20 years in congress to have an impact,” said Shalala.

When it comes to healthcare, Obamacare, especially in District 27, is a hot topic.

“If you like your Obamacare you keep your Obamacare. It is not true that I am going to take Obamacare from you if there is not a better option on the table,” said Salazar.

Obamacare guarantees you can’t be denied insurance because of pre-existing conditions, you can stay on your parents’ insurance until you’re 26 and you can’t lose your insurance because you get sick.

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“We have the largest enrollment of Obamacare of any congressional district in the county,” said Shalala.

“More than 100-thousand people in District 27 get their health care through Obamacare. We cannot take that away in the middle of COVID-19.”

For challenger Salazar, she believes in wearing masks during the coronavirus struggle but also looks beyond.

“We got to wear the mask. Got to make the mask mandatory. Social distancing, absolutely but in the meantime let’s get to work.”

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She proposes job centers in her congressional offices that would funnel federal dollars and contracts into local businesses and to workers.

“I am going to help you with these employment centers I will create within my congressional offices.”

Salazar has spent much of her campaign focused on Representative Shalala’s failure to report a series of personal stock transactions.

“Being part of the political elite and that has not brought anything good to South Florida,” said Salazar.

Shalala said she missed a deadline for filing.

“I owned up to it. I took responsibility. I put it on our website. Done,” she explained.

To hear more from Donna Shalala and Maria Elvira Salazar, click here to read and watch the debate between the two opponents on Facing South Florida with Jim DeFede on Sunday, October 25.

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