|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Florida's 21st district
January 3, 1993 – January 3, 2011
|Preceded by||None (District created after the 1990 census)|
|Succeeded by||Mario Diaz-Balart|
August 13, 1954 |
|Alma mater||New College of Florida, Case Western Reserve University|
Lincoln Rafael Díaz-Balart (born Lincoln Rafael Díaz-Balart Caballero on August 13, 1954) was the U.S. Representative for Florida's 21st congressional district from 1993 to 2011. He is a member of the Republican Party. He previously served in the Florida House of Representatives and the Florida Senate. He retired from Congress in 2011 and his younger brother, Mario Diaz-Balart, who had previously represented Florida's 25th congressional district, succeeded him.
Early life and education 
Diaz-Balart was born in Havana, Cuba to the late Cuban politician Rafael Diaz-Balart and Hilda Caballero Brunet. His aunt, Mirta Diaz-Balart, was the first wife of Fidel Castro. Her son, and his cousin, is Dr. Fidel Ángel "Fidelito" Castro Díaz-Balart. His uncle is the Cuban-Spanish painter, Waldo Díaz-Balart.
He was educated at American School of Madrid, Madrid, Spain; New College of Florida; and Case Western Reserve University, from which he earned a law degree. He was involved in a Miami private practice for several years before holding elective office.
Political career 
Díaz-Balart as well as his immediate family were all members of the Democratic Party. Díaz-Balart was the former president of the Dade County Young Democrats and the Florida Young Democrats, as well as a member of the executive committee of the Dade County Democratic Party. On April 24, 1985, Diaz-Balart along with his wife and brother Mario switched their registration to Republican.
Díaz-Balart served in the Florida House of Representatives from 1986 to 1989 and served in the Florida Senate from 1989 to 1992.
U.S. House of Representatives 
Congressional committee assignments 
Party leadership 
Political positions 
In general, Diaz-Balart's voting record has been moderate by Republican standards. Over the past two years, he has received scores of 60 from the American Conservative Union (ACU). His lifetime rating from the ACU is 73.
In 2006, he voted against the Federal Marriage Amendment and in 2007 voted for the Matthew Shepard Act, which expanded the federal hate crime law to include sexual orientation and disability. In December 2010, Diaz-Balart was one of fifteen Republican House members to vote in favor of repealing the United States military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" ban on openly gay service members.
He was a sponsor of the Homeland Security Act. He is a sponsor of The American DREAM Act which seeks to facilitate access for illegal immigrant students to post-secondary education by allowing states to have power to determine requirements for in-state tuition. He is also a steadfast proponent of comprehensive immigration reform. He has been a key figure in south Florida bringing millions of dollars to the community most notably one hundred million dollars to the US Southern Command, which is housed in district 21.
He has achieved passage into law of historic pieces of legislation – such as the Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central American Relief Act (NACARA), and the codification of the U.S. embargo on Cuba (requiring that all political prisoners be freed and multi-party elections scheduled in Cuba before U.S. sanctions can be lifted). Diaz-Balart took to the floor of the House for passage, the legislation that created the Department of Homeland Security, and the extension (for 25 years) of the Voting Rights Act.
During his career Diaz-Balart has advocated a naval blockade to be deployed against Cuba, also calling for the United States to assassinate Cuban President Fidel Castro. Diaz-Balart has defended Velentin Hernández, convicted of murdering Luciano Nieves, a fellow Cuban exile who supported negotiations with the Cuban government, and lobbied extensively for the release and pardon of Cuban exile Orlando Bosch, who has been accused of involvement in the 1976 bombing of Cubana Flight 455, helping organize an "Orlando Bosch day" to gain support for his release. He also attempted to block Jimmy Carter's visit to the island in 2002.
Congressman Diaz-Balart was a member of the Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus
Diaz-Balart has also been an advocate of the improved treatment of Haitian immigrants. He was a strong supporter HRIFA, legislation that provided for the legalization of many Haitian immigrants. More recently, Diaz-Balart has called for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to include Haitian nationals. TPS provides immediate and temporary relief from deportation.
Diaz-Balart publicly called the passage of the health care bill in Congress on Mar. 22, 2010, “a decisive step in the weakening of the United States.”
2008 financial crisis 
Political campaigns 
1992 through 1998 
In 1992, Diaz-Balart defeated fellow State Senator Javier Souto in the Republican primary for the newly created 21st District. No other party put up a candidate, assuring Diaz-Balart's election. He was unopposed for reelection in 1994, 1996, 2000 and 2002 and defeated an underfunded Democrat, Patrick Cusack, with 75 percent in 1998.
2004 and 2006 
In both 2004 and 2006, Lincoln Diaz-Balart was unsuccessfully challenged by Frank J. Gonzalez , a Libertarian Party candidate in 2004 and Democrat in 2006. In 2004 Diaz-Balart won with 73% of the vote. In 2006, Diaz-Balart won with 59% of the vote.
In 2004, Gonzalez ran for U.S. House as the Libertarian Party candidate and spent around $12,000 and earned 54,736 votes or 27% of the total.
In 2006, Gonzalez managed to earn 45,522 votes or 41% according to the Florida Department of State's Division of Elections website.
Diaz-Balart's Democratic opponent in 2008 was former Hialeah Mayor Raul L. Martinez. It was initially thought that Diaz-Balart would face his toughest race to date. Although the 21st District is considered the most Republican district in the Miami area, Martinez was thought to be very popular in the area. Nevertheless, Diaz-Balart won re-election with 58% of the vote.
Personal life 
Díaz-Balart is married to Cristina Fernandez, and has two children: Lincoln and Daniel. His brother, Mario Díaz-Balart, previously represented the 25th district of Florida but now represents the 21st district. He has two other brothers, Jose Diaz-Balart, a journalist, and Rafael Díaz-Balart, a banker.
- The Miami Herald; Emotions Racing in Little Havana, October 31, 1982
- The Miami Herald, Latin Opponents Take Traditional Party Stands by Elizabeth Morgan, October 10, 1982
- El Nuevo Herald, Díaz-Balart Se Pasa Al Partido Republicano, April 24, 1985
- United States House of Representatives Roll Call Vote on H.R. 1592
- Chris Geidner, House Passes DADT Repeal Bill, Metro Weekly (December 15, 2010).
- House Vote 638 - Repeals 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell', New York Times (December 15, 2010).
- Lincoln Diaz-Balart - United States Congressman
- Thomas (Library of Congress): HR 4777
- Politicization of Elian Gonzalez Often at Cross-Purposes With Law. CNN transcripts.
- Ann Louise Bardach. Cuba confidential. p50
- Congressman Diaz-Balart Says U.S. Should Consider Assassination of Fidel Castro. Wayne Smith. CIP senior fellow. March 31, 2004.
- Our Man's in Miami. Patriot or Terrorist? Washington Post. April 17, 2005.
- The ghost of terror past. Salon.com.
• Who is a terrorist? South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Wayne S. Smith. May 31, 2002.
° Congressman Diaz-Balart Says U.S. Should Consider Assassination of Fidel Castro. Wayne Smith. CIP senior fellow. March 31, 2004.
- Ann Louise Bardach. Cuba confidential. p351. "Ignoring the growls of the Reich team and attempts by Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Lincoln Diaz-Balart to block the visit, the Bush administration reluctantly granted approval" Will Jimmy Carter Become First President to Visit Castro in Cuba? CNN transcripts.
- Lincoln Diaz-Balart - United States Congressman
- "Bailout Roll Call" (PDF). 2008-09-29. Retrieved September 29, 2008.
- "Mario Diaz-Balart Will Run to Succeed His Brother". Roll Call. 2010-02-11. Retrieved 2010-08-23.
- Chang, Daniel (2010-04-30). "Lively House races on the ballot - Political Currents". MiamiHerald.com. Retrieved 2010-08-23.
- U.S. Congressman Lincoln Diaz-Balart official U.S. House site
- Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Congressional profile at GovTrack
- Congressional profile at OpenCongress
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission
- Financial information (federal office) at OpenSecrets.org
- Staff salaries, trips and personal finance (federal office) at LegiStorm.com
- Issue positions and quotes at On the Issues
- Voting record at The Washington Post
- Appearances on C-SPAN programs
- Profile at SourceWatch
|United States House of Representatives|
Florida's 21st congressional district