An Independent Voter prominently featured in Broward County Commissioner Chip LaMarca’s television commercial claims she is “Voting for Chip LaMarca because he cares.” Just one little problem, she can’t vote for Chip LaMarca. A review of Broward elections records shows the woman actually lives in Broward County Commission District 7.
Melissa Carbonell was delighted to appear in LaMarca’s thirty-second commercial. “My daughter thinks I’m famous!” Carbonell wrote on Facebook. “So happy to be a part of your 2014 campaign Chip LaMarca!” In response, LaMarca wrote, “You will be Melissa-Angel Carbonell this weekend, especially during college football games, political talk shows, and of course animal planet.” REDBROWARD can confirm LaMarca purchased airtime during WPLG Channel 10 Sunday news programming.
But Carbonell does not live in LaMarca’s commission district. On October 1, 2014 Carbonell contributed $250 to LaMarca’s campaign. The Fort Lauderdale address on the campaign treasurer’s report lies within District 7. Broward Property Appraiser records confirm Carbonell owns the home at that address. Voter registration databases show Carbonell is a registered NPA at that address. Her district is represented by County Commissioner Tim Ryan.
Desperate to appear popular, this would not be the first time Chip LaMarca uses social media to fool Broward voters.
The commercial with Carbonell features testimonials from LaMarca’s mother, wife and his appointee to a County committee. The campaign must have been eager to feature Carbonell, a young attractive businesswoman and mother in their ad campaign. Perhaps they thought nobody would fact check their commercials?
As REDBROWARD reported last week, LaMarca’s claims that unemployment numbers were cut in half during his tenure do not apply to District 4. LaMarca’s own zip code suffers from 10.1% unemployment.
Last month, REDBROWARD revealed LaMarca’s paid social media team was inserting themselves in campaign advertisements. They pretended to be average citizens supporting LaMarca even though his campaign paid $12,000 for their services. LaMarca’s latest financial report shows he paid the team from Benjamin Porritt LLC another $10,000 for services.
Carbonell is right about one thing. Chip LaMarca does “care.” He cares about getting re-elected, even if it means fooling his constituents.