Post # 221, Bob McKnight's Florida Commentary
Congresswoman Karen Bass of California "airmailed the Cuban vote in Miami from the Democrats to the Republicans," for the foreseeable future.
In 2016, Democratic Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton beat Republican Candidate Donald Trump within the Cuban vote in downtown Miami. Her record was certainly not sympathetic to their conservative values and issues, but Trump on the other hand was clueless about that voting block. Once elected, Trump began getting support from Miami's Cuban Congressional Delegation, including looking for potential breaks in the Democratic links on 8th Street.
Trump got a present in the form of liberal Democrat Karen Bass (D., Cal.). She had made several trips to Cuba in the '70's as a physician assistant to market drugs in Cuba, before serving in the California Assembly. Bass later, as a member of Congress, went out of her way to express condolences upon the passing of Fidel Castro in 2016. She added positive comments about policies coming out of the Raul Castro Communist Administration, including the merits of socialism. It is not known if she benefited financially from her previous marketing efforts in Cuba with her most recent pro Cuba comments.
In 2020, along comes the Democrat nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden seeking to duplicate Clinton's 2016 results in voter rich South Florida. But Biden had the baggage of Congresswoman Bass "pro-socialism," which he underestimated. Trump benefited greatly by the messaging created by the Cuban Congressional delegation in Miami about Democrats favoring "socialism." The Democrats were caught flat footed. The result--Biden lost Florida by about the number of votes he lost in Little Havana. Thank you Congresswoman Bass and the Democratic National Committee.
Now we are in 2022 with the Mid term elections. And in Florida, with a Cuban Chairman of the Florida Democratic Party, nothing has been done to distance the Democrats from Congresswoman Bass's Democratic verbal "socialism" in Miami. Biden has said nothing to distance himself from that rumor. Biden has also said very little about the jailing and abusive treatment of Cuban protestors about lost freedoms. The protests have spread now from Miami to multiple U.S. locations; in downtown Havana, Cuba; and around the world in multiple hot spots.
Last week, President Biden got advice from someone, but no one in the Administration is taking credit, for his opening up Cuba to business for Americans. This reward was in return for....well, nothing. The commerce is Cuba is all controlled by the Government and Military, so any business does not go directly to the people that need it. Again without reason, Biden also opened up limited travel to Cuba. The Biden announcement sounded like Obama Two from a previous Democratic Administration.
If Biden is to have any chance at all in 2024, he will have to shore up the Democratic vote among patriotic Cubans in downtown Miami. He should start with a clear policy standing by the freedom protestors about jail abuse in Cuba. He then should seek to remove the blight of Bass's socialism remarks, and find good Cuban American Democrats that believe and practice conservation values of freedom and democracy. Nothing less will win back these great Americans, and they should demand nothing less.