Congressional face-off in UM’s district

Annette Taddeo is the democratic challenger for Floridas 18th district Congressional Seat. Photo Courtesy of Deming Williams.

Democrat Annette Taddeo and Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen will compete for the congressional seat for Florida’s 18th district, which includes the University of Miami’s Coral Gables campus as well as South Miami, Miami Beach, Coconut Grove and Monroe County.

Taddeo, founder and CEO of the language translations company LanguageSpeak, said that when she was a college student she endured economic obstacles that she believes many college students can relate to.

“When I graduated [from college], we were also going through a recession and had a very difficult job market,” said Taddeo, who graduated from the University of North Alabama in 1992. “That is why I started my own business; it was impossible to get a job.”

The platform she is running on has many components based on her business experience with which she hopes to beat the 19-year incumbent, Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

“We need a lot more common-sense business people in Washington,” she said. “Being a business woman is a huge asset and something we are severely lacking in Washington.”

Taddeo said she wants small businesses to receive more governmental contracts, tax incentives and loans.
For the overall economy, Taddeo sees clean energy as a source of revitalization. She wants to invest more money in alternative energy, including solar, wind and ocean turbine power, which Taddeo believes is in exact contrast to Ros-Lehtinen.

“I hope that people really clean out Washington,” she said. “That is what I am trying to do, running against [Ros-Lehtinen], a 19-year incumbent – someone that has stood with oil and gas every step of the way.”
Taddeo added that she sympathizes with the financial woes of graduating college students.

“Student loans have been a huge burden on students. We have not done enough to ease this burden,” Taddeo said.

Her plans included offering debt relief for certain service jobs in professions such as the medical and teaching fields.

Taddeo believes that her debt relief views are not the only way she appeals to college students, but sees the challenger spot as an advantage to this demographic as well.

“We need to clean up Washington and we cannot do that with the same people going back to Washington. I think college students understand that we need real down-to-earth people in Washington to do that.”

Ros-Lehtinen has not yet been available for an interview with The Miami Hurricane due to the events of the Republican National Convention. The Miami Hurricane plans to interview Ros-Lehtinen in the near future.

To learn more about Taddeo’s campaign, visit the Web site Annette Taddeo for Congress For Congress at

To learn more about Ros-Lehtinen’s campaign, visit the Web site Re-elect Ileana Ros-Lehtinen For Congress at