Sep 16, 2020
Joe Biden Compares Donald Trump To Fidel Castro In Bid To Win Florida Latino Vote
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Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden compared President Donald Trump to the late Cuban dictator Fidel Castro Tuesday in an apparent attempt to sway Latino voters in Florida, per Fox News.
Trump and Biden have been battling it out for Florida voters — a demographic now considered key to winning the 2020 presidential election — and recent polls indicate that Trump is narrowly edging out Biden among Latino voters in the Sunshine State.
“Last week, an NBC News/Marist poll showed Mr. Trump with a narrow edge over Mr. Biden among Latino voters in Florida, earning 50% of their support compared with 46% for Mr. Biden,” the Wall Street Journal reported.
More worrisome for Biden, he’s polling well behind Hillary Clinton’s 2016 support numbers: “An August survey of Latino voters by Equis Lab, a Democratic polling firm, found Mr. Biden with a 16-point lead over Mr. Trump among that group in the state, substantially less than Mrs. Clinton’s exit-poll advantage in 2016.”
“A string of polls shows Trump has increased his standing with Hispanic voters over the last four years,” CNN adds.
President Trump and the Republican Party have made “a concerted effort” to court Hispanic voters this time around, particularly former Cubans, who already lean Republican. CNN explains that Trump has used a “three-pronged” approach to sideline Biden’s support among Latinos: “Tie Biden to the left wing of his party in an effort to win over immigrants from authoritarian socialist countries; promise economic growth and low taxes to the sizable pool of Hispanic Americans starting small businesses; and pledge to combat gang activity in big cities in an effort to win over older Hispanic voters.”
Biden, Tuesday, fought back in a Univision Orlando interview by directly comparing Trump to Castro, whom many older Florida voters emigrated to the United States to escape.
“Trump has more in common with Castro than with Churchill,” Biden said. “Look who he admires. He admires Putin, he admires Xi, he admires everyone who behaves in an authoritarian way. I am the exact opposite. I have faith in the democratic system.”
He later added that he’d “work like the devil to make sure I turn every Latino and Hispanic vote.”
There’s a problem with Biden mentioning Castro: Obama Administration, where Biden was second-in-command, took great pains to normalize relations with the Communist country. The Trump Administration rolled back those changes, reinstituted sanctions and cut off increased economic activity between the United States and Cuba.
Biden, back in April, said that a Biden White House would return to Obama-era relations with Cuba, according to the Hill.
“In large part, I would go back,” Biden told a Miami CBS affiliate at the time. “I’d still insist they keep the commitments they said they would make when we, in fact, set the policy in place.”
That would mean, though, that Biden would be communicating directly with the last vestiges of the Castro regime — something President Donald Trump has not done.
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Mike Bloomberg raises $16 million to pay fines of 32,000 former felons so they can vote again in Florida: report
Earlier this year, Vice President Joe Biden and former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg were rivals in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary; now, Bloomberg is one of Biden’s most generous donors and is fighting to help him win Florida in the general election — and that includes paying the fines of almost 32,000 African-American and Latino voters who have felony convictions.
Michael Scherer, in the Washington Post, explains that “Bloomberg and his team” have raised $16 million for “a program organized by the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition to pay the fines, fees and restitution costs for former prisoners who are already registered to vote in Florida but barred by law from participating in the election because of those outstanding debts.”
In Florida, many Democrats have argued that prohibiting people from voting because of those fines or fees is a form of voter suppression. But many Florida Republicans have disagreed — including Judge Barbara Lagoa, a far-right Cuban-American Republican who is being considered by President Donald Trump as a Supreme Court nominee following the death of Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg on September 18. Lagoa, Scherer notes, “cast a concurring opinion on the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals upholding the state law requiring payment of debts.”
Bloomberg, who was a Republican during some of his time as mayor of New York City but is now a Democrat, believes that people who were incarcerated in the past shouldn’t be forbidden to vote because of fines — and Bloomberg, Scherer reports, saw that $16 million as a “more cost-effective way of adding votes to the Democratic column than investing money to persuade voters who already have the right to vote, a Bloomberg memo said.”
That memo read, “We have identified a significant vote share that requires a nominal investment. The data shows that in Florida, black voters are a unique universe unlike any other voting bloc, where the Democratic support rate tends to be 90%-95%.”
However, the former NYC mayor was already helping Biden in Florida before raising that $16 million and helping the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition. Bloomberg recently donated at least $100 million to helping Biden in Florida.
In 2018, Florida voters passed a statewide constitutional amendment that allowed convicted felons to vote in elections after they served their time — and the GOP-controlled Florida legislature, in response, passed a law saying that they cannot vote again if they have any unpaid fees or fines associated with their sentences. Democrats attacked the law as a blatant attempt at voter suppression.
Polls are showing the presidential race to be quite close in the Sunshine State. Biden has been ahead in many polls this month, although not by much. Recent polls have shown Trump trailing Biden in Florida by only 2% (CBS News/YouGov), 3% (Redfield & Wilton), 1% (Kaiser Foundation Foundation), 2% (Benenson/GS Strategy), 5% (Monmouth University) or 3% (CNBC/Change Research).