The Study

Ozzie Guillen's Castro Problem

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Today, the Miami Marlins suspended their manager, Ozzie Guillen, after he blurted out to TIME Magazine that he loves Fidel Castro. Guillen’s remark would have been bizarre and unpopular just about anywhere in the country, but it’s especially controversial in Miami, where local politicians are already calling for him to resign. Where does opinion on Castro stand today?

According to a 2008 Gallup poll, Castro’s approval rating in the U.S. is 5 percent. Another Gallup poll shows that while favorable opinions of Cuba have ticked up in recent years, 57 percent of Americans still have an unfavorable view of the country, compared to just 37 percent who have a favorable view. More detailed (and Miami-specific) information is available from a 2011 Florida International University poll of Cuban-Americans in Miami-Dade County. That poll showed mixed attitudes toward Castro’s Cuba: For example, while 80 percent of respondents said they thought the embargo hadn’t worked “very well” or “at all,” a majority favored continuing it. No word yet on how they’ll feel about continuing Guillen’s association with their hometown team. 

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