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Free Trade In South Florida

Why did John McCan make such a point of Barack Obama’s opposition to a free trade treaty with Colombia?  Charged McCain, “Sen. Obama, who has never traveled south of our border, opposes the Colombia Free Trade Agreement. The same country that's helping us try to stop the flow of drugs into our country that's killing young Americans.”

To be sure, McCain is a free trader, but in bringing up the Colombia treaty, he was appealing to Colombian-Americans, who are one of the fastest growing voting blocs in south Florida.  Indeed, visited Colombia this summer in the midst of the campaign to denounce Obama.  But, as Elizabeth Mendez Berry and Don Duncan report, many of these Colombians are turning out to be Democrats. Indeed, they have helped to put a scare into the Republican Diaz-Balart brothers – Lincoln in Miami and Mario in Southern Dade County – both of whom are involved in tight races with Democratic challengers. McCain, who needs every vote he can get in Florida, may come up empty.

--John B. Judis