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La FloridaFive Hundred Years of Hispanic Presence$
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Viviana Díaz Balsera and Rachel A. May

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813060118

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813060118.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FLORIDA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.florida.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Florida, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FLASO for personal use.date: 29 July 2021

How Cubans Transformed Florida Politics and Gained National Influence

How Cubans Transformed Florida Politics and Gained National Influence

(p.263) 12 How Cubans Transformed Florida Politics and Gained National Influence
La Florida

Susan Eckstein

University Press of Florida

This essay documents how Cuban Americans became politically influential in Miami, and leveraged local for national political influence. Their influence peaked in years of presidential elections, when candidates for the highest office of the land promoted policies to curry Cuban American votes in Florida, the largest “swing state.” However, with the arrival of ever more Cubans in the post-Soviet era with lived experiences, and views and values in turn, very different from those of the first who fled the revolution, Cuban-American political influence has been on the decline. Cuban Americans no longer vote as a political bloc and the Cuban American leadership has become more divided in its policy preferences as well as partisan affiliations. Meanwhile, Cuban American politicians have continued to prioritize their “narrow” ethnic interests over interests of the broader Hispanic community that has rapidly expanded in their midst.

Keywords:   Cuban Americans, political bloc, Miami

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