With Bernie Sanders leading in the Democrat primary polls, Florida Democrats are beginning to freak out over the damage the avowed socialist and apologist for murderous communist dictatorships will do to the party in Florida.
Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders’ strong showing in the Iowa caucuses and his polling lead heading into Tuesday’s first-in-the-nation primary are creating anxiety among Democrats who fear that having a self-described “democratic socialist” at the top of the ticket would hurt candidates in state and federal races.
Those concerns — hammered by former Vice President Joe Biden during Friday’s primary debate — are especially pronounced in Miami, where hundreds of thousands of voters belong to families that have fled leftist Latin American regimes.
“If he’s at the top of the ticket in 2020, it’s going to be a bad year for Democrats in Florida,” said state Rep. Javier Fernandez, a Cuban-American attorney campaigning to flip what should be a competitive Miami-area state Senate seat from red to blue.
Sanders argued the opposite on Sunday, saying on CNN that he would bring “incredible gains for down-ballot Democrats” if he becomes the Democratic nominee.
But centrist Democrats worry that his unbending push for Medicare-for-All and other tax-funded entitlements will turn off moderate Democrats and independent voters and feed into a lengthy Republican campaign to label all Democrats as socialists. Sanders also traveled to Nicaragua in 1985 to celebrate the leftist Sandinista revolution, visited the former Soviet Union the day after his wedding in 1988, and flew to Cuba in 1989 in the hopes of meeting late dictator Fidel Castro.
The Sunshine State is home to millions of residents who have firsthand experience with the horrors of socialism. To have an unrepentant socialist at the top of the ticket in November not only makes Florida a much easier state for Trump to win, but it will decimate down-ticket Democrats. It is a lose-lose proposition for them because they must either defend a defiant socialist or turn against their own party’s presidential nominee.
The dilemma, nonetheless, is of the Democrats’ own making. They are the ones who for decades allowed the infection of socialism in their party to fester and now it has spread across the entire party.
As my late father would have said, que se jodan.