Nelson Diaz, the chairman of the Miami-Dade County Republican Party, said Thursday he's running for reelection to another two-year term.
In an interview with the Miami Herald, Diaz said he's proud of how Republicans did in the Nov. 8 election but "there's some unfinished business that we need to take care of."
"We need to make sure we get a Republican governor and Cabinet back in 2018," he said. "We need to send a Republican senator to help Marco Rubio. And there are a few state House seats we need to win back in Miami, and two state Senate seats we need to defend."
In an email to party members Thursday, Diaz outlined Republicans' 2016 wins.
"Presidential years are always tougher for Republicans, but together we proved we could survive and do better than everyone expected," he wrote, adding that the local GOP's annual Lincoln Day fundraisers brought in about $200,000 each over the past two years.
Diaz, who has already served two terms, said a third term would be his last. He faces no opposition yet for the Dec. 22 election, but at least one early Donald Trump supporter, party member Lorenzo Palomares-Starbuck, sounds eager to recruit a Trump loyalist for the job -- or perhaps to run himself. Diaz remained neutral in the presidential primary, though he's a friend of Rubio's.
"Miami-Dade needs a new direction," Palomares-Starbuck, who is traveling out of the country, said in a text message to the Herald. "Marco Rubio lost Miami-Dade. So did Trump."
Registered Democrats outnumber Republicans by about 300,000 in Miami-Dade, so it's unrealistic for any Republican running statewide to hold out hope for a win here.
This year, Rubio, who is from West Miami, nearly matched his level of MIami-Dade support from 2010, a year that heavily favored Republicans. He received about 45 percent support in 2010 and 43 percent support in 2016. In raw numbers, that amounted to about 200,000 more Miami-Dade votes for Rubio in 2016 than in 2010.
Photo credit: Jose A. Iglesias, el Nuevo Herald