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Opinion: How Democrats can win back the Cuban-American vote

November 27, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

On the Sunday afternoon before the presidential election, I was driving through a typically quiet South Miami suburb with my mother when a Trump caravan bulldozed past us.

(CNN)On the Sunday afternoon before the presidential election, I was driving through a typically quiet South Miami suburb with my mother when a Trump caravan bulldozed past us.

I realized that Trump's incessant attacks on Democrats as socialists had actually worked beyond the Latinx community and, even worse, had the power to generate a swell of red energy in a blue city.

Two days later, on election night, my greatest fear proved to be true: According to exit polls, Trump had won 56% of the Cuban vote, and 46% of Latinos writ large, in Florida.

Even worse, fervent support for Trump resonated through down-ballot races, as two House Democrats from South Florida lost to their Republican challengers.

Also unseated was Democratic state Sen. Jose Javier Rodriguez, who represented a Miami district and lost to Republican challenger and Latinas for Trump founder Ileana Garcia by a razor thin margin of just 34 votes after a tight recount.

Each race involved unique issues, but there was one constant: the Republican candidate's exploitation of the Latino community's trauma at the hands of socialism, coupled with a blind support of Trump.

We had been pretty much screaming at the top of our lungs about what was going on in South Florida, not just with the Cuban American community, because what people don't realize is that the socialism and communism messaging doesn't just have an impact on Cuban Americans, it has an impact even outside of the Latino community.

During early voting in Miami-Dade County, Ferrera was told that she shouldn't bother going to Westchester or Hialeah (two predominantly working class Latino neighborhoods) because those are places "where we didn't have many [Democrat] voters," Ferrera said.

The Biden campaign may think the Cuban-American vote is far gone, but it's not.

Even as Trump refused to concede and questioned the legitimacy of the election, Miami's right-wing politicians egged him on, further driving a divide between truth and fiction in our already fragile and vulnerable community.

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