The US, as a federal constitutional republic, has three branches, the executive, judiciary, and Congress, which provide checks and balances. Sovereignty in the country is shared between the federal and state governments. The president heads the executive branch and operates independently from the legislature, a branch of the government that shares power between the Senate and the House of Representatives, which are the chambers of Congress. While political leaders may serve in the two chambers in different states, Debbie Jessika Mucarsel-Powell, the current United States Representative for Florida’s 26th congressional district, is the most remarkable individual because she is the first woman representative of Florida’s 26th congressional district and Ecuadorian-born individual to serve in the US Congress.
Marco Antonio Rubio
Before discussing the most interesting politician in Florida, it is crucial to provide a background of the three Congressional representatives. Marco Antonio Rubio is an American, born in Miami, Florida in 1971. His current political position is a Florida senior Senator. His Cuban parents, Mario Rubio Reina and Oriales Rubio immigrated into the US in 1956. He joined Tarkio College, Santa Fe Community College after graduating from South Miami Senior High School. He also earned his BA degree in political science from the University of Florida. In 1996, Marco Rubio graduated from the University Of Miami School Of Law. He had previously worked as the Florida House of Representatives’ speaker and tried to be nominated as president in 2016 through a Republican ticket, but failed. He worked as a city commissioner for West Miami before joining the 111th district from 2000. Rubio won the Senate seat in 2010 and later in 2016 after losing the campaign for president. He contended against Patrick Murphy of the Democratic Party and won with 52% of the vote (Boys, 2016). Marco Antonio Rubio is one of the Republican senators with several political achievements.
Richard Lynn Scott
Scott is originally from Bloomington, Illinois, where he was born in 1952. His parents are Esther J. Scott and Gordon William Myers (whom he never met). Scott is a Republican, who from 2011 to 2019, was the 45th governor of Florida. Currently, Scott is serving as the junior US Senator from Florida, a seat he occupied in 2019. He graduated from Dedman School of Law at Southern Methodist University after attending the University of Missouri. Since he could not run for another term as a governor because of term limits, he ran for the Senate and defeated the incumbent, Bill Nelson, through a mandatory recount, which revealed that he had won by 10,033 votes (Spitzer, 2018). Although Richard Scott won by a thin margin, he is the current junior senator from Florida.
Debbie Jessika Mucarsel-Powell
Debbie immigrated to the US having been born in Guayaquil, Ecuador in was born in 1971. Her mother, Imelda Gil, came to the US with her two elder sisters when she was 14 years old. Her father, Guido Mucarsel Yunes, had died earlier in gun violence. She is also a college administrator, besides being the US Representative for Florida’s 26th congressional district. She is a graduate of Pomona Catholic High School in California. She also has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Pitzer College and a master’s degree in International Political Economy from Claremont Graduate University. Debbie challenged the Republican Representative, Carlos Curbelo, for the Congressional seat and won with 63.5% of the vote and 50.9% of the vote during the general election (Foreman, 2020). Being a woman and an immigrant in the position, I find Debbie the most interesting figure of the three politicians.
The Most Interesting Congressional Representative
Debbie is the most interesting Congressional representative in Florida because she is the first woman representative of Florida’s 26th congressional district and Ecuadorian-born individual to serve in the US Congress. Her election as a Congressional representative in the US shows the level at which the country is receptive and accepting of cultural and gender differences. She is not a US-born politician but immigrated with her family when she was 14 years old. She was educated in the US and joined politics later in life to become the representative of Florida’s 26th congressional district. The fact that a woman immigrant could gain such an important political position reveals the level of maturity of American politics.
Another interesting fact about Debbie is her political stand, especially against the policies of the current US President, Donald Trump, who is opposed to immigrants. Being an immigrant, she is most likely to support immigration policies, favoring those people seeking to better their lives in the United States. As a result, she supports the passage of a policy in the country that would make life better for immigrants, including those from Latin America. Furthermore, Debbie was not from a wealthy background and remembered the one-room apartment she shared with her mother, who had to work double shifts as a home health care provider. Debbie struggled to gain the political position she holds; hence, she appreciates American leaders and policy-makers for creating an opportunity for her to become a successful politician.
Besides, Debbie supports efforts to improve the lives, including education, of Hispanics in the US. For example, she sponsored The Hispanic Educational Resources and Empowerment Act of 2019 bill. Besides, Debbie is interested in the policy regarding gun safety, primarily because her father was killed in gun violence before the family immigrated into the United States. Interestingly, her decisions in government are informed by her experiences from her young age and later after she immigrated into the US. Depending on the bills that Mucarsel-Powell has sponsored or co-sponsored, she is represented by a purple triangle on the GovTrack ideology-leadership chart (Govtrack, 2019). Overall, the score indicates that she is neither a complete conservative nor an absolute liberal leader.
The United States political system is multifaceted, comprising of three arms of government, the executive, judiciary, and legislature. The executive consists of the presidency and state governments, while the legislature has two chambers of Congress, the Senate and the House of Representatives. Consequently, three congressional representatives represent each state in Congress, a senior and a junior senator, and a member of the House of Representatives. For example, the congressional representatives in Florida are Marco Antonio Rubio, the senior senator, Richard Lynn Scott, the junior senator, and Debbie Jessika Mucarsel-Powell, the member of House Representatives. While the three leaders have an exciting political life, Debbie is the most remarkable person because she is the first woman representative of Florida’s 26th congressional district and Ecuadorian-born individual to serve in the US Congress. Notably, the American political space is receptive to a woman immigrant.
Boys, J. D. (2016). Hillary rising: the politics, persona and policies of a New American Dynasty. Biteback Publishing.
Foreman, S. D. (2020). Florida’s 26th and 27th Congressional Districts: Two Cuban American Strongholds Support Non-Cuban Democrats for Congress. In The Roads to Congress 2018 (pp. 111-136). Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.
Spitzer, S. J. (2018). Conclusion: American Democracy and Hereditary Power in the 21st Century. Modern American Political Dynasties: A Study of Power, Family, and Political Influence, 343.