Miami-Dade mayoral candidate Alex Penelas is releasing his first set of TV ads as he takes his case to the voters ahead of the Aug. 18 election.
The first ad, airing in Spanish, is titled “Corazón,” or “Heart.” It features Penelas speaking about his family history paired with the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.
“My parents came here from Cuba with nothing more than a hope and a prayer. They worked their fingers to the bone to give us a better life,” Penelas begins while speaking in Spanish.
“That’s who the people of Miami-Dade are. They do whatever it takes, and they do it with a big heart and generous spirit. That’s why I know we can come back from the devastation of this virus. My economic recovery plan will create jobs and lower taxes for small business. We will make it back, and like disasters before, we’ll do it together. I’m Alex Penelas and I believe in Miami-Dade.”
The second ad, titled “Leader,” ties back to Penelas’ previous tenure as Miami-Dade County Mayor from 1996-2004.
“Tough times have never stopped Alex Penelas from getting the job done for Miami-Dade,” the ad’s narrator begins.
“As Mayor, he expanded the seaport and airport, grew tourism and trade, creating thousands of new jobs. Now, Alex Penelas is back with a bold vision and economic recovery plan to put people back to work, [give] relief for small businesses and invest in mass transit to create jobs. Alex Penelas: the experienced leader Miami-Dade needs now.”
Penelas is seen as one of the front-runners in the seven-person field. He’s led his opponents in overall fundraising, pulling in more than $4.2 million between his campaign and political committee.
“As a son of Miami-Dade and of Cuban immigrants, I feel a deep connection to the heart and soul of this community. The passion, spirit and resilience of our residents is what gives me faith that together we can overcome some of the difficult times that still lie ahead,” Penelas added in a statement issued along with the ad release.
“I have no doubt that my bold vision and vast experience leading us through challenging circumstances coupled with an inclusive approach that fosters collaboration from all will be the formula to help us emerge better and stronger than ever before.”
The two ads will go up as part of a six-figure ad buy on local TV stations in the county. They began airing Thursday.
Penelas is competing in the mayoral contest against Carlos Antonio De Armas, entrepreneur Monique Nicole Barley, County Commissioners Esteban “Steve” Bovo, Daniella Levine Cava and Xavier Suarez, and real estate agent Ludmilla Domond.
The Miami-Dade County mayoral election will take place alongside Florida’s primary elections Aug. 18. If no candidate receives a majority of the vote — a high likelihood in the seven-person field — a runoff between the top two candidates will be held during the Nov. 3 general election.