Politics & Government

Miami volunteer booted over lie about Obama

A volunteer with Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart's campaign was dismissed Monday after warning a Miami voter not to vote for Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama because "e's a Muslim.''

The assertion came in a phone call to Maria Levrant who said she was shocked by the "lagrant lie.''

Obama, who was born in Hawaii to parents who did not practice any religion, is Christian. But the rumor he is Muslim has swirled on the Internet for months. The Obama campaign has even set up a website to refute the claim.

Levrant, an aide to Miami-Dade Commissioner Katy Sorenson, said she was cleaning her house Monday when a volunteer from Diaz-Balart's campaign called, asking if she was supporting the Republican congressman along with Republican presidential nominee John McCain.

When Levrant told the woman she was undecided, she said the volunteer told her ''this country is in really terrible trouble'' and that "the other one, he's a Muslim.''

Levrant, a Democrat, said she told the volunteer it wasn't true; the volunteer referred her to ``all those years living in other countries.''

Obama lived in Indonesia, the world's largest Muslim country, as a child.

''I don't mind the negative campaigning, but what I take offense to is the flagrant lying,'' Levrant said.

A spokesman for Diaz-Balart said the congressman had expressed his regret to Levrant and dismissed the volunteer.

Read the complete story at miamiherald.com

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