After months of a bitter rivalry for the Republican nomination for Florida’s 40th Senate district — and only six days before Primary Day — Alex Diaz de la Portilla has released his first TV ad.
The former Republican senator touts his Diaz de la Portilla name-brand in 30-second clip, telling voters he’s a familiar, tried and true candidate who he believes will best represent conservative values in Tallahassee.
In the ad, Diaz de la Portilla promotes his record of cutting taxes, protecting senior citizens, while fighting for jobs and for a better education system in Florida.
“My trajectory speaks for itself,” says Diaz de la Portilla to the camera as patriotic music plays in the background.
The Spanish-language ad began running Wednesday, six days before Diaz de la Portilla is set to face off against two Republicans in the special election primary.
Diaz de la Portilla is running against state Rep. Jose “Pepi” Felix Diaz and Lorenzo Palomares but only one of those candidates — Diaz — has run television ads in the race.
The campaign has largely been seen as a contest between Diaz and Diaz de la Portilla.
Diaz de la Portilla is no stranger to Florida politics. He served in the Florida House of Representatives from 1994-2000 and then transitioned into the Florida Senate, where he represented Florida’s 36th district from 2000-2010.
Diaz de la Portilla quickly moved up the ranks in office, serving as Senate President Pro Tempore from 2002-2004. He later became Senate Majority Leader from 2008-2010, but ultimately termed out and was unable to seek reelection.
The former state lawmaker has had returning to Tallahassee on his mind for some time, though, itching to get back to where he feels most comfortable. In 2012, he made an unsuccessful run for the 112th district of the Florida House of Representatives, but ultimately lost to Jose Javier Rodriguez.
DLP and his brother, former state Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, have been heavyweights in the Miami political scene for decades, though it appeared they were down and out after Miguel Diaz de la Portilla lost his reelection bid to the same man who bested his brother in 2012: Jose Javier Rodriguez.
Voters, Diaz de la Portilla believes, won’t easily forget the impact of his family on Florida politics.
“You already know me and my whole family,” Diaz de Portilla says in the clip. “We’re Republicans with conservative values.”
Diaz de la Portilla vows to continue fighting for voters every day if they elect him to represent them in Tallahassee.
The ad’s release is late in the game and comes at a time when many voters in SD40 have already cast their ballots in the special primary, which is scheduled for Tuesday. In-person early voting opened Saturday and will continue through the week.
Mail-in ballots are also a critical component of special elections and have been circulating for weeks in the district, which covers parts of Miami-Dade County, including the Kendall area.
The winner of the GOP special primary will run against the winner of the Democratic primary, either Ana Rivas Logan or Annette Taddeo, in a special general election held Sept. 26.