As much as I love and respect my Cuban heritage, I’m not and will never again be excited about Cuban politicians. After all, just think what they brought to Cuba!
Most people of Cuban heritage in this country are American citizens who came to the United States as exiles from the communist Castro regime; as I did as a child via the Pedro Pan Children’s program in 1961. Each of us has an interesting and tragic story to tell but since we had to learn English quickly, adapt to a new country, work for a living and for some while raising a family, we never got around visiting talk shows and/or writing our stories for our American audiences.
Have you noticed that the Americans with Cuban ethnicity who have told their stories are always the politicians? We don’t hear much about our excellent Cuban physicians, our talented musicians, writers and artists, our professors and scientists; but we hear about Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz and even Democrat Senator Menendez.
Well, they are not my favorite Cubans and I’m sure not yours either. Our Cuban politicians today have either turned RINO or seek office in pursue of wealth and/or power. I can no longer think of one of them who I can be proud of calling “mi compatriota.”
Our South Florida Cuban congressmen Mario Diaz-Balart & Carlos Curbelo and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen have an abominable voting record—they’re RINOs (all of them) just like Lincoln Diaz-Balart and David Rivera before them. Not only they have low % conservative voting record, some like Rivera have been involved in shady deals. In addition, they support illegal immigration, open borders, and amnesty. It is embarrassing and disgraceful!
Another Cuban-American, Mel Martinez who George W. Bush had named as HUD Secretary during his first presidential term, became Senator from Florida in the 2004 election. How long did it last? Mel betrayed us! Cuban Americans gave him contributions and worked hard to get him elected. Then we got Obama, our first communist President. Instead of fighting, Mel retreated—too much for him! Mel quit the Senate after four years, not even finishing up one term. However, he stayed long enough to accumulate benefits. He then became a lobbyist and concentrated on obtaining wealth.
In 2010 we got very excited with another Cuban, Marco Rubio. This one was real, smart, eloquent, charming. Soon we heard the story about his immigrants parents; father a bartender and mother a maid at hotels while raising a family. Everyone took for granted the Rubios had been Castro refugees, until some reporter discovered they had arrived in the United States a few years before Castro. Marco Rubio proceeded to explain away the discrepancy as just mixing up dates. However, he continue to exploit the story over and over and over! He still was the child of poor immigrants!
Well, once again our Cuban community gave him our money and our hard work to get him elected to the Senate. As soon as Rubio became Senator, he started joining RINOs like Senators John McCain and Lindsay Graham. For a guy who never served in the military, he became very pro-war including joining McCain, Graham, and Hillary Clinton in calling for war in Libya and deposing Gaddhafi.
Marco Rubio then joined Democrats and RINOs in “the Gang of Eight” where he became the face of “Comprehensive Immigration Reform.” He was by then too important to be concerned with his constituents. At first I thought Marco was just naïve and I tried several times to have him listen to our side of the issue by writing him several letters (both in English and Spanish) and sending him a petition signed by many legal Hispanics and brought to his office in person. Senator Rubio ignored me and all the Cuban community who helped get him elected. Instead, Marco chose to please Party establishment, those who promised him to become the future face of the Republican Party.
Sure enough he became an instant sensation in the entire country. That tender smile and those patriotic speeches were melting the brains of many Americans. But he forgot that the constitution says “We the People” and Florida voters didn’t forget the betrayal. On March 15, 2016 he lost the nomination for President by losing the Florida primary election to New Yorker Donald J. Trump by almost 20 points. That was a historical moment: a sitting Florida Senator losing an election by such a vast margin to an outsider! Some want Rubio to run again for his Senate seat even after he promised he would run only for President.
Marco Rubio was so much in a hurry to become the first Hispanic President that he forgot it takes time, experience, maturity to earn it.
The excitement in this election by Cuban Americans was doubled by the candidacy of another man of Cuban background: Ted Cruz. But of course, this one was different. After all, Cruz was elected Senator in Texas, his father had been in prison, and he was a super intelligent graduate from Harvard School of Law. What do we actually know about Ted Cruz and his family background? Just like with Marco Rubio’s parents, Cruz’s father was not a Castro Cuban refugee. Rafael Cruz had been in prison in Cuba during the Batista regime. Well, if we remember our history, those in prison with Batista were “fidelistas”, idealistic angry youngsters who loved revolution instead of hard work. Who else do we know who was a prisoner under Batista? Right, Fidel Castro!
Rafael Cruz Sr. came to the US before Castro and at that time, he was an atheist and a Marxist (as Senator Cruz’s friend Glenn Beck has pointed out). Somehow Cruz Sr. found religion, but not within the Catholic Church. He became a Baptist minister, not just any Baptist Church but the Dominionist denomination, a rare and strange form of Christianity that surely is not mainstream.
In addition, Senator Ted Cruz was born in Canada and lived there for four years while both his parents had acquired Canadian citizenship. Senator Cruz had double citizenship (American & Canadian) until 2014 when he resigned his Canadian citizenship. That is a major problem because the requirement for President of “natural born” has not been legislated.
Ted Cruz was very involved with the George W. Bush presidential campaign, where he met his future wife, Heidi. Heidi Cruz worked for the State Department under Condolezza Rice on trade agreements and, also became an active member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Ted Cruz moved back to Texas where he eventually became Solicitor General and associated himself with Tea Party groups. How conservative is Ted Cruz?
Senator Cruz’s campaign was funded by major financial institutions, including Goldmann Sachs where Heidi worked and is today in leave of absence. Senator Cruz while campaigning for President told us he’s against amnesty and illegal immigration, and against TPP. However, that is not what his voting record and some of his presentations show. He co-authored an article on TPA trade agreement with Congressman Paul Ryan, not someone considered a conservative. Besides speculation as to Cruz’s conservatism, Senator Cruz revealed a very sleazy and unprofessional behavior throughout his presidential campaign. To this date, Senator Cruz hasn’t endorsed our Republican nominee Donald J. Trump.
The last thing we need in the 2016 election is another Cuban-American. But unfortunately two more Cuban Americans have decided to run for the Senate seat of Marco Rubio in Florida: Carlos Lopez-Cantera and Carlos Beruff. Is it now obligatory that one Senator from Florida must be Cuban-American?
Sen. Marco Rubio recently gave his strong support for “my very close friend” Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera. Senator Rubio y Lopez-Cantera have been friends for many years. Both were State Representatives in Florida and both became Speaker of the House. Lopez-Cantera is currently the Lt. Governor of Florida, a position that he was sworn into on February 3, 2014. He was born in Madrid, Spain in 1973 to a Jewish mother and a Cuban Catholic father. Lopez-Cantera, just like Marco Rubio, has been a politician his entire adult life, and not much to show for it. If you liked Senator Rubio, then you would love Lopez-Cantera; another handsome and charming young man with a Cuban father, but hardly any accomplishments.
Carlos Beruff, another candidate for the Senate seat in Florida also has a Cuban background. He tells us he was born in Miami to Cuban immigrant parents but his voter registration in Manatee County showed he was born in Cuba. This was explained as just an error in his voter registration. Just like with Marco Rubio, Beruff doesn’t tell us his parents came before Castro instead he states “his family fled Cuba.” Cubans didn’t flee before Castro unless they were working for the revolutionaries headed by Fidel Castro. And that is exactly what happened with his mother. She was imprisoned by Batista for her role in the attack on the presidential palace. Well, just allow voters to imagine his parents were like the rest of Castro’s Cuban refugees; you know, the ones with the sad story and good reputation for conservatism.
Mr. Beruff has been running ads showing his face in about every possible publication, including the conservative websites I enjoy reading. He is trying hard to establish some conservative and outsider credentials, just like in his TV ads when he mimics Donald Trump as just another “concerned businessman.” The problem with Beruff is that “he’s no Donald Trump! He goes to lengths to portray himself as an outsider and a conservative. The reality is that he is neither!
Carlos Beruff has been involved in politics for many years. He has made large contributions to Republican establishment candidates such as Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney, and to his friend Charlie Crist to whom he remained faithful even after he changed from Republican to Independent.
His money contributions to Governor Rick Scott’s campaigns have been highly effective in getting him plenty of recognition and high level appointments by the Governor, including the Southwest Florida Water Management District, the Sarasota-Bradenton Airport Authority, the State College of Florida, and the Governor’s Commission on Healthcare and Hospital Funding.
Beruff’s business dealings have caused major controversies. He is president of Medallion Homes, a construction business that was found to use cheap Chinese dry wall in the construction of some homes and use of a defective toxic material led to a lawsuit.
As Chairman of SWFWMD, he has been instrumental in the firing of dozens of scientists that have caused detrimental effects to enforcement capabilities. Beruff seems unconcerned about Florida’s natural and historical preservation; instead he has proposed changes to current laws in order to build condos, a hotel, convention center, and a marina on Sarasota Bay. (See Bradenton Times).
Please, if you love this country and are truly an American patriot, don’t vote for another Cuban-American who tells you he/she has parents who “fled Cuba.”