Tim Canova says Debbie Wasserman Schultz monitored his campaign through DNC resources

Canova claims congresswoman cares about 'political power, career advancement'

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. – For the first time in more than 20 years, U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., has a primary opponent who has been endorsed by Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vt. 

Local 10 News spoke with Tim Canova to talk about leaked emails and why he can't get Wasserman Schultz to debate him.

Canova has been dragged into the national spotlight over the controversial Democratic National Committee emails that were leaked, which some argue show favoritism toward Hillary Clinton.

Canova said even his name has popped up dozens of times. 

"She was using DNC resources to monitor what my campaign was doing (and) how it was doing," he said.

Canova, who is running for public office for the first time, is talking to his attorneys because he thinks there could be federal election law violations.

The law professor is the congresswoman’s first primary opponent in more than two decades.

"It's a spectacle," Canova said. "It's sad that this is what's become of Wasserman Schultz's career."

Canova questions her success as DNC chair and thinks her national role has affected District 23.

Other than Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., Canova claims Wasserman Schultz has the highest absentee rate in 2015. 

"She won't debate me. She won't acknowledge me. She doesn't want me to speak anywhere," he said.

Local 10 News contacted Wasserman Schultz's camp to get answers on Canova's consistent attempt to set up a debate, but has yet to receive a response.

"She believes in political power," Canova said. "She believes in her own career advancement, but democracy means we should have open debates."

Wasserman Schultz recently told Local 10 News that Canova has done absolutely nothing for the district.

In downtown Hollywood, where Canova's headquarters are located, some folks said they still support her despite what's happening in Philadelphia. 

"In all honesty, she was working as a Democratic chairperson and she was looking out for the best for the Democrats," Bill McGrath said.

Like Sanders, Canova said his money contributions from voters have been small -- typically less than $17.

So far, he has raised more than $2.5 million. 

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