A Miami congressional candidate and the evolution of U.S.-Cuba policy
From Patricia Mazzei of the Miami Herald:How the politics of Cuba have changed in Miami in recent years.
When Democrat Annette Taddeo first ran for Congress in 2008, she supported keeping the U.S. trade embargo. Now, eight years later, she's running for Congress again, in favor of lifting the embargo and asking voters to sign a petition backing President Barack Obama's visit later this month to Cuba.
She sent supporters an email urging their signature after incumbent Republican Rep. Carlos Curbelo said he was "disappointed" to learn of Obama's trip and asked his own supporters to sign a petition opposing the visit. Republicans may instead counter that she's been a Cuba flip-flopper.
So, for Taddeo, what changed?
"In 2008, I was very much against lifting the embargo, as I think almost everybody was," Taddeo acknowledged in an interview with the Miami Herald.
Five years later, in 2013, she got a call from people trying to arrange meetings on Capitol Hill for Yoani Sánchez, the Cuban blogger who was visiting Washington D.C. Taddeo says she put some together for Sánchez and several U.S. senators, and attended herself.
"She certainly opened up my mind," Taddeo said, crediting Sánchez, who opposes with embargo, with making her rethink her position. "We can go back to just being isolationist, but what I learned was this just hurts the Cuban people."