President Obama’s recent decision to change course on Cuba has garnered overwhelming support from the general public. By roughly a two-to-one margin, the country supports establishing diplomatic relations, according to a new Washington Post/ABC News poll.
It found that 64 percent of Americans back opening diplomatic relations with the nation. In addition 68 percent would back ending the trade embargo with Cuba so American companies could start doing business there, and an incredible 74 percent support ending the travel restrictions to allow Americans to visit the island. Only 24 percent of Americans oppose ending travel restrictions.
The only group where a clear majority opposes opening diplomatic relations is conservative Republicans. Only 38 percent of conservative Republicans back this change, while 60 percent oppose it.
This means potential Presidential candidates, like Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL,) might be helping themselves in the Republican primary by so publicly criticizing Obama’s recent move, but at the expense of hurting the ability to win the general election. Trying to win the primary without alienating the general public was a real problem for Republicans in 2012 and could be again in 2016.