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Sunday, October 14, 2007

Si te gusta el sexo oral, vote por Caragol por consejal


BY LAURA FIGUEROA
lfigueroa@MiamiHerald.com
Hialeah Councilman Jose 'Pepe' Caragol has drawn criticism for a sexual slogan he has been pitching on Spanish television.
CITY OF HIALEAH
Hialeah Councilman Jose 'Pepe' Caragol has drawn criticism for a sexual slogan he has been pitching on Spanish television.
Live in Hialeah? Like oral sex? Then one Hialeah City Council candidate thinks he's the one who deserves your vote.
As election season intensifies in the City of Progress, incumbent Jose ''Pepe'' Caragol, known for dishing out rhyming one-liners at city events, is catching criticism for a slogan he has been pitching on Spanish television.
``Si te gusta el sexo oral, vote por Caragol por consejal,'' Caragol said on a March 14 taping of the America Te-Ve show Seguro Que Yes! and in subsequent radio and television appearances.

The phrase, which rhymes in Spanish, translates as, ``If you like oral sex, vote Caragol for council.''

Caragol, 76, who has served on the council since easily defeating three other candidates in a 2005 special election, makes no qualms about the statement, chalking it up to his ``humorous personality.''
''People want to give it a negative interpretation, but anyone who knows me and my way of being knows that I didn't mean for the comment to degrade or offend anyone,'' Caragol told The Miami Herald.
Mercy Dominguez, his opponent for the Group 2 seat on the council -- one of four seats up for grabs in the Nov. 6 citywide election -- said that as a mother and a woman she finds the phrase offensive. The risqué comment is one of the main reasons Dominguez decided to run, she said. ''We should expect more out of our elected officials,'' Dominguez said. ``Is this supposed to be the person who is representing the best of Hialeah on the council?''
Dominguez is a former member of the city's planning and zoning board. Caragol served for more than 20 years as the city's translator and spokesman under the Raul Martinez administration.
Caragol is quick to note that Dominguez did not point out the rest of the zingers he dished out at the Seguro Que Yes! taping.
''I also said that I was the only V-I-P councilman appointed to the board,'' Caragol said. ``Viejo, impotente, y presumido -- old, impotent, and vain.''
For now, Caragol says he'll be sticking to a new campaign slogan -- ``Olvídese del colesterol, y vote por Caragol'' -- ``Forget the cholesterol and vote for Caragol.''

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