Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders may be on an unstoppable warpath to the 2020 Democratic nomination, but it’s pretty clear at this point that even if he runs the table on Super Tuesday, he’s going to run into a stumbling block with the primaries get to Florida on March 17. And while a loss in the Sunshine State probably won’t be enough to derail his train to the general election, it could very well cost him bigly when it’s time to go up against President Donald Trump in November.
Florida Democrats depend heavily on a big Hispanic turnout to win elections, and Bernie Sanders’ recent comments about Fidel Castro and his Cuban dictatorship could be enough to tip the vital swing state back into Trump’s column when voters go to the polls. Far-left Democrats may adore Cuba and its 70+ year experiment in communism, but you won’t find many of them in South Florida. The home of more Cuban refugees than any other state in the union, Florida is already turning – sharply – against the democratic socialist frontrunner.
The New York Times reports:
Mr. Sanders’s remarks threatened to undercut his candidacy in the nation’s largest presidential battleground state as he seeks to build momentum on a broader scale after a series of early primary victories. In Florida, Mr. Sanders stands to alienate not just Cubans but also a far more diverse group of Latinos, including Colombians, Nicaraguans and Venezuelans, than the ones he won overwhelmingly in Saturday’s Nevada caucuses.
“I’m totally disgusted and insulted,” said Lourdes Diaz, the president of the Democratic Hispanic Caucus in Broward County, who is Cuban-American. “Maybe this will open people’s eyes to how super, super liberal and radical Bernie is. I’m not going to defend him anymore. I’m over it.”
Sanders is under fire for remarks he made on “60 Minutes” Sunday, when asked about his previous support of the Castro regime.
While Sanders condemned “the authoritarian nature” of the Cuban leadership, he went on to say: “But you know, it’s unfair to simply say everything is bad. When Fidel Castro came to office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing? Even though Fidel Castro did it?”
This statement left Sanders open for attack from his competitors.
In a tweet, Michael Bloomberg wrote, “Fidel Castro left a dark legacy of forced labor camps, religious repression, widespread poverty, firing squads, and the murder of thousands of his own people. But sure, Bernie, let’s talk about his literacy program.”
One might hope that this is the point where “normal” Democratic voters wake up and realize that this guy is bad news – that his “democratic socialism” is just a thin veneer wrapped over the “actual socialism” that he believes in. Cuban immigrants in Florida already know it. Will the rest of the voters realize it before it’s too late…or will we have to crush this menace in the general?
Welp, either way is fine with us.