Local elected leaders calling on Biden to come to Miami to make statement about Cuba

MIAMI, Fla. – Many of Miami’s Cuban-American groups often bicker with each other over how best to bring democracy to Cuba, but on Friday they spoke with one voice.

“We must stand united,” said Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, addressing a group that gathered at the Brigade 2506.

Cuban-Americans are united in their dedication to helping their beleaguered brothers and sisters on the island who are running low on food, water, electricity, vaccines and freedom.

“I know the president and for any president, they will have limited resources,” said Rosie Suarez who was outside of the restaurant Versailles. “But there’s gotta be something. Something needs to be done.”

The president talks a good game on Cuba, expressing solidarity with the Cuban people and promising aid. 

“Cuba is unfortunately a failed state,” President Biden said this week in a speech. Many believe he’s failed to act.

Orlando Gutierrez Boronat of the Assembly of Cuban Resistance said he believes that Biden has “the right sense of what this regime is. So we thank him for that, but it’s not enough.”

Some Cuban American leaders privately say Biden’s response to the Cuban uprising has been slow and weak. He badly lost the Cuban-American vote in Miami-Dade County in 2020. Failure to help Cubans now could haunt Democrats for years.

These Cuban American leaders say they like what President Biden has said so far about the Cuba uprising, but they want something stronger.

Suarez said Biden needs to come to Miami for his “tear down this wall” moment.

“We saw when President Reagan went to Berlin and said ‘tear down that wall.’ We need President Biden to (deliver) an equally emphatic statement backed by action here in the city of Miami,” Suarez said.

Several elected Democrats have called on the president to come to Miami and deliver a major speech on Cuba and Haiti, but there is no indication at this time that he will. And, the window to do it is closing.

About the Author:

Michael Putney came to Local 10 in 1989 to become senior political reporter and host of "This Week In South Florida with Michael Putney." He is Local 10's senior political reporter.