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Gun-control group to spend $85K backing Diaz de la Portilla Florida Senate campaign


Running a tough race for reelection to the Florida Senate in a moderate Miami-Dade district, Republican Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla is reminding voters at every turn that he blocked open-carry and guns-on-campus legislation the last two years by using his role as Senate Judiciary Committee chairman to deny the bills a hearing.

In a press release, Everytown for Gun Safety, a gun-control advocacy group backed by former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, has announced it will help him spread the message.

Through a newly formed political committee called the Florida Everytown for Gun Safety Victory Fund, the organization said it will spend $85,000 on online ads, bus shelter ads and a digital billboard. The effort is part of a $25 million national campaign to support candidates and ballot initiatives that further its cause.

Diaz de la Portilla represents Senate District 37, which spans from Key Biscayne to West Miami and south to Palmetto Bay. He faces stiff opposition from State Rep. Jose Javier Rodriguez.

Here's the press release from Everytown:


For Two Years, Senator Diaz de la Portilla Single-Handedly Stopped Gun Lobby’s Attempts to Weaken Florida’s Already Lax Gun Laws 

Bus Shelter Ads and Billboards Launch Wednesday in Support of His Reelection

MIAMI – Florida Everytown for Gun Safety Victory Fund today announced an $85,000 ad campaign to fund online digital ads, digital bus shelter ads and a digital billboard in support of Republican State Senator Miguel Diaz de la Portilla. The Victory Fund is a Florida political committee affiliated with Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund and the Florida chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a part of Everytown for Gun Safety.

Senator Diaz de la Portilla has worked to promote public safety for the past two years. Using his position as Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, he declined to hear a bill that would have allowed guns on Florida’s many college campuses and another that would have allowed people to openly carry handguns in public. Prior to reaching these decisions, Senator Diaz de la Portilla listened closely to concerned stakeholders – like campus security, professors and university presidents – from around the state. After careful consideration, he agreed that guns on campus would only heighten the risks already found in colleges and universities, and stopped this dangerous proposal two years in a row.

 “We are lifelong Republicans, but after our son Jerry and 48 others were shot and killed at Pulse, we decided that any candidate who wants our vote, must be a candidate who is committed to support common-sense, meaningful gun safety measures,” said Maria and Fred Wright, members of the Everytown Survivor Network, parents of Orlando Pulse Nightclub shooting victim Jerry Wright and residents of Senator Diaz de la Portilla’s district. “At home in Miami, the place we raised Jerry, it’s Republican Senator Miguel Diaz de la Portilla who will get our vote.”

In Florida’s 2017 legislative session, bills putting public safety at risk are sure to return, including proposals to allow guns on college campuses, open carry and other dangerous proposals. Re-electing Senator Diaz de la Portilla will ensure that all Floridians have a strong voice in support of common-sense gun laws in Tallahassee next year.