Vice President Mike Pence is coming to Miami Friday to show his support for Juan Guaidó, leader of the opposition in Venezuela, whom many, including President Donald Trump, would like to lead the embattled South American country.
Pence will likely meet with Republican leaders such as new Sen. Rick Scott and Gov. Ron DeSantis, as well as representatives of the Venezuelan opposition. They will make a show of it.
And it just might win them the White House in 2020.
Why? Because liberal Democrats, including Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, and, most egregious, Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar can't help themselves. They are falling all over themselves to complain about a coup in Venezuela by the opposition to topple strongman Nicolás Maduro, who put himself in office through thoroughly undemocratic means and is starving his people.
Their words have drawn the ire of Miami's immigrant community, which is well aware of the dire economic situation in Venezuela and the desperate need for change.
Minnesota's Omar recently called Trump's move to support Juan Guaidó "a coup" and called for "peaceful dialogue" despite the fact that Maduro has spent years clamping down on the opposition and that sanctions have failed.
A US backed coup in Venezuela is not a solution to the dire issues they face. Trump's efforts to install a far right opposition will only incite violence and further destabilize the region. We must support Mexico, Uruguay & the Vatican's efforts to facilitate a peaceful dialogue.— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) January 25, 2019
Sanders also can't shut up. Though beginning with a measured tone, he then backed off support for the opposition, tweeting that the United States "has a long history of inappropriately intervening in Latin American nations; we must not go down that road again."
But we must learn the lessons of the past and not be in the business of regime change or supporting coups—as we have in Chile, Guatemala, Brazil & the DR. The US has a long history of inappropriately intervening in Latin American nations; we must not go down that road again. 3/3— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) January 24, 2019
Gabbard, whose candidacy may have been dead before it started because of inappropriate comments, tweeted, "The United States needs to stay out of Venezuela."
The United States needs to stay out of Venezuela. Let the Venezuelan people determine their future. We don't want other countries to choose our leaders--so we have to stop trying to choose theirs.— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) January 24, 2019
Then there's California Rep. Ro Khanna: "Blatant American meddling." Really?
Let me get this straight. The US is sanctioning Venezuela for their lack of democracy but not Saudi Arabia? Such hypocrisy. Maduro’s policies are bad and not helping his people, but crippling sanctions or pushing for regime change will only make the situation worse. https://t.co/NU6ikw0hoC— Ro Khanna (@RoKhanna) January 23, 2019
This is the talk of the Democratic Socialists, who have also called it a coup:
North Jersey DSA condemns the US government’s recognition of Venezuela’s coup, and call on DSA endorsed representatives @RashidaTlaib and @AOC to stand with us against American imperialism. Hands off Venezuela!https://t.co/BPrekhI45J— North Jersey DSA ???? (@NorthNJDSA) January 24, 2019
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Florida Democrats, who understand the situation and the pivotal role played by Venezuelans, who have also dealt with a repressive regime for decades, have taken a more measured tone:
Florida Democrats stand in support of the people of Venezuela marching today to demand an end to the illegitimate Maduro's regime and the restoration of democracy. We denounce the . legitimacy of the Maduro's regime and his efforts to remain illegally in power. #23Ene— Florida Democrats (@FlaDems) January 23, 2019
There are times when the United States needs to assert itself in Latin America. Building a wall is not the answer. Indeed, Democrats, by calling for
Florida may well decide the presidency next year. Understanding Latin America and Miami's Latin American immigrants is vital to gaining the advantage. So far, Democrats have earned a flunking grade. And that could mean four more years of Trump.