Romney has a huge 29-point lead over Obama among Miami-Dade’s Hispanic voters, making Miami-Dade an outlier from the rest of the country, where Obama has overwhelming support among Hispanics. The difference can be attributed largely to Cuban-American voters, 76 percent of whom support Romney, the poll found. Only 19 percent of Cuban voters in Miami-Dade said they are supporting Obama.
The county’s Cuban-Americans are also largely opposed to Obama’s approach to U.S.-Cuba relations. Seventy-one percent of Cuban-Americans surveyed said they oppose the president’s Cuba policies, while only 14 percent support the president. Among all voters surveyed, 37 percent supported the president’s Cuba policies, while 43 percent opposed them.
“I oppose any relationship with somebody that has kept a people in jail in their own country and has caused such emotional strife,” said Republican Maria Perez, 59, referring to Fidel Castro. “From the beginning, [Obama] made a statement that he wanted to speak with entities from their government, and that people should be able to go visit.”
Perez, a schoolteacher who plans to vote for Romney, also said she opposed increased travel from America to Cuba. Almost half of those surveyed supported increased travel, while 33 percent opposed it — though 60 percent of Cuban-Americans said they opposed more travel.
“If we give [Castro] money, if we allow him to have money to function, then he stays longer,” Perez said. “It’s like giving a transfusion to a system that enslaves people.”
When asked to name the most important problems facing Miami-Dade County today, 36 percent of the respondents cited the economy and unemployment, and 16 percent cited corruption in county government. Crime, the quality of schools, and the cost of insurance were also named as major problems.