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Florida Candidate Carlos Beruff Leverages Trump's Rhetoric In US Senate Race

Ryan Benk
Carlos Beruff [Right] speaks to supporters in Jacksonville Friday.

As the August 30 primary approaches, candidates hoping to take over for Florida Senator Marco Rubio are turning up the heat.

Sarasota Republican Carlos Beruff was in Jacksonville Friday to try to convince First Coast conservatives he’s their man.

A steadfast supporter of presumptive Republican presidential nominee, Donald Trump, Beruff has no qualms about Trump's controversial immigration rhetoric.

Even as some Republicans have condemned Trump’s recent comments about a Hispanic judge, Beruff refused to comment and firmly planted his support behind Trump’s hard line on undocumented immigration, whether from Mexico or anywhere else.

“I take undocumented immigration from any border," he said. "It’s just that the one border that we have that’s the most porous and that needs to be closed is that one [speaking of Mexian border].”

Beruff, an American of Cuban descent, doesn’t stop there. He said he also agrees with Rubio that Cuban refugee immigration policy needs reform.

“There is abusive people from Cuba coming here taking benefits because of the policy that cost us about $700 million dollars a year in social benefits and then the go back to Cuba,” he said. “ That’s not right.”

A recent Sun-Sentinel investigation found Cuban refugees took that much in U.S. aid before returning to their home country. 

Ryan Benk is a former WJCT News reporter who joined the station in 2015 after working as a news researcher and reporter for NPR affiliate WFSU in Tallahassee.