The state’s official tally shows that McCain beat Romney better than three to one in Miami-Dade.
If McCain did indeed sweep Little Havana, it’s not yet clear why. It could be that among a crowd of candidates with hardline views on
Robert Novak claims that Senator Martinez’ endorsement helped McCain against Romney, and “more lethal…was the word spread by Martinez that he considers Romney a demagogue because of his tough stand against the immigration bill co-sponsored by McCain and Martinez.” If that’s the case – and Novak offers no evidence – then Cuban Americans voted altruistically, in solidarity with Latinos who would face Romney immigration policies such as deportation of illegal immigrants that would not affect Cuban Americans.
Finally, here’s an overview of voter behavior statewide with an interesting nugget: voters who like President Bush flocked to Romney, those who disapprove went with McCain.
Update: A St. Petersburg Times analysis says McCain won due to high turnout, and disproportionately high turnout of moderate Republicans. As for Cuban Americans, “While McCain and Romney were tied among non-Hispanic Republicans, exit polls showed Romney won just 9 percent of Cuban-American Republicans, compared to 54 percent for McCain and 32 percent for Rudy Giuliani.”