10 Things You (Probably) Didn’t Know About Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL)

In just two days, Representative Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) will deliver the Spanish-Language Republican Address to the Nation following the president’s final State of the Union address.

What most people know about Rep. Diaz-Balart is that he’s a seven-term Congressman from Florida.

Speaker Ryan considers him a “tremendous ambassador for conservative principles.  And he shares House Republicans’ commitment to bold, pro-growth solutions.

Here are 10 things you probably don’t know about Rep. Diaz-Balart. (HINT: there’s SCUBA diving involved)

1.) His uncle, Waldo Diaz-Balart, is an artist who has collaborated with Andy Warhol.

Waldo Diaz-Balart

 Waldo Diaz-Balart

2.) He plays the drums.

3.) His son, Cristian, underwent open heart surgery at two months old, and his wife, Tia, is a cancer survivor. Both are healthy and the loves of his life.

Congressman Diaz-Balart with his wife, Tia, and son, Cristian.

Congressman Diaz-Balart with his wife, Tia, and son, Cristian.

4.) He is an avid scuba diver. He met Fabien Cousteau, grandson of Jacques-Yves Cousteau, in his underwater laboratory during Mission 31, where Cousteau successfully broke his grandfather’s record of 30 consecutive days of underwater living.

SCUBA

5.) He and his wife foster dogs, and have a soft spot for older dogs that often go unloved. Their dog, Napoleon, is 20 years old.

Napoleon and Mako Diaz-Balart

Napoleon and Mako Diaz-Balart

6.) He was once interviewed by Triumph the Insult Comic Dog.

Congressman Diaz-Balart being interview by Triumph the Insult Comic Dog.

Congressman Diaz-Balart being interview by Triumph the Insult Comic Dog.

7.) He comes from a family of public servants. His grandfather and father served in Congress in Cuba, and his brother, Lincoln, served in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Congressman Diaz-Balart’s grandfather, Rafael Jose Diaz-Balart, sitting behind his desk as mayor of Banes, Cuba in 1933.

Congressman Diaz-Balart’s grandfather, Rafael Jose Diaz-Balart, sitting behind his desk as mayor of Banes, Cuba in 1933.

8.) He was twice the victim of identity theft.

9.) He ran with the bulls in Pamplona.

10.) He is an advocate of human rights and defender of political prisoners, dissidents, and pro-democracy activists around the world.

The Republican Address to the Nation in Spanish will be available after the State of the Union Address HERE.  Until then, be sure to follow @GOPEspanol and @HouseGOP for additional updates.