Bush came to Miami yesterday. I found out about this when traffic got all botched up on the drive home.
In typical style, Bush offered no explanation behind his latest political act that was designed to show he has balls when it comes to dealing with Castro – in June the administration sharply tightened the rules for Cubans living in America to visit or send money back to Cuba. This has actually blown up in his face; many Cubans who once supported Bush are now extremely honked off – the restrictions do nothing to Castro and it isolates family members who can’t even go back on an emergency basis, such as to be there when a parent or child is dying. Instead, Bush attacked John Kerry for not backing the final version of the 1995 Helms-Burton law that restricted trade with Cuba – a law that is so haphazardly written that it has never been fully enforced.
Polls show that while los viejos on Calle Ocho will back Bush to the tune of 80%, it’s the only Hispanic voting bloc he can count on. You gotta know you have a problem when a Republican has to campaign for votes in Little Havana, the Bob Jones University of Cuban exile true believers. As it was, he was barely able to fill half of the cavernous Miami Arena. Apparently his campaign didn’t know that they would be competing with the MTV Video Music Awards at the American Airlines Arena down the street.