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Rubio pal Nelson Diaz fights off Ron Paul-ites to win Miami-Dade GOP chair

Nelson Diaz, a member of Sen. Marco Rubio's inner-circle, was narrowly elected to lead the embattled Miami-Dade GOP on Tuesday night, narrowly beating longtime Republican executive committee member Emiliano Antunez.

Diaz, who otherwise might have walked into the post, barely won thanks to a spirited effort by Republicans inspired by former Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul. A large number of the newcomers won party posts during the GOP primaries in August.

One source put the vote at 56-54. Diaz confirmed he won by two votes.

Republicans said before the meeting that, if all the Paul-ites showed up, Antunez might have won. A few of them forgot to properly submit party loyalty oaths and some Republicans loyal to Diaz wanted to block them from party posts.

The meeting was closed, outgoing Chairman Ben Powell said earlier. Previous chair races were open to the press.

The chairman race would have taken on added significance had another Rubio insider decided to run: Outgoing Congressman David Rivera, who's being nagged by two federal investigations concerning personal and campaign finances.

Rivera ultimately listened to reason and decided to sit this one out. But he'll be back.

Diaz, a lawyer and lobbyist with Becker & Poliakoff, is a much safer choice. Diaz isn't a polarizing figure and the local party -- overwhelmed in the just-ended elections -- needs to soothe rattled nerves, expand and get ready for 2014, when Republican Gov. Rick Scott is up for re-election.

Comments

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Louis Nardozi

Bull. He won because he was FORCED to win. A "democratic" (republican) process did NOT take place. It's time to look at reality and disenfranchise the "two party process".

Joseph Lee

The raw truth about power;

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely"

"Unlimited power is apt to corrupt the minds of those who possess it"

Nunya Biznezz

If Republicans think they are going to win anything after cheating and using strong arm tactics, they are delusional...

Adan Rodriguez

Figures they would cheat. The really politically powerful areas always have this level of corruption and always bypass Robert's Rules to keep themselves in power.

Saltwater Cowboy

It is amazing that the GOP would even let Rivera in the same room let alone consider him to lead the party. Rubio needs to keep close tabs on Rivera.

Robert Tully

Nelson Diaz is a lobbyist who supported Debbie Wasserman Shultz. His lobbying firm is responsible for giving hundreds of thousands of dollars to Democratic candidates, and it is obvious his job in that firm is to get Republicans to support big-government Democratic backed legislation. When Republicans are trying to stop Obamacare at the state level, this guy is lobbying for the AARP!

These people at the meeting were scared of a conspiracy to take over the party - well news flash - it has already been taken over by liberal republicans who act like democrats. None of the people who voted for this guy has a legitimate claim to calling themselves 'conservatives' or of complaining about 'Obamas agenda.' They've just helped promote Obama's agenda!

Norman Sanders

Nelson Diaz is a good man, and will be an excellent leader for our party at the local level. What we as Republicans need to learn from the recent elections is that we need to move away from the so called "conservative agenda" which touts pro-life and social policy that is divisive. We are in the best hands since Rivera (even though sleazy, still very effective) was the head of our local party.

Amicus7236

This fight between Republicans can be call a "dog fight".

Fro

Why is that as soon as you support Ron Paul the media and other morons put an "ite" after your candidate. Sounds like "oh he is an X ite so you can dismiss him" I don't know maybe it's just me.

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