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Oil Politics Could Really Hurt Democrats In Miami

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – When oil prices soar, strange things can happen.

With the U.S. cutting off importation of Russian oil and gas, which accounted for 8% of the U.S. oil supply, the country is now on the hunt for a replacement.

That led U.S. representatives to a quiet meeting in oil-rich Venezuela, which triggered outrage in the South Florida political world.

Addressing a member of the Biden administration, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said, "You are aware that the Venezuelan oil industry is in shambles after years of mismanagement and corruption?"

It was a tough day on Capitol Hill for the Biden administration when it was learned that the U.S. had quietly approached the Venezuelan government about buying replacement oil.

FIU's Dr. Jerry Haar weighed in, saying, "If all politics is local, I think there is probably fewer things that President Biden and the Democrats could do to drive South Florida voters into the arms of the Republicans."

Buying oil from Dictator Nicolas Maduro's U.S. sanctioned communist/socialist government, a regime that supports communist Cuba with cheap oil, does not go down well in South Florida.

Haar, the professor and executive director for the Americas at FIU's College of Business, says, "We do not need to go with hat in hand and suck up to the tyrant Nicolas Maduro."

There are plenty of other places to get oil, says Haar, who is not alone is saying we can find it in our own backyard by taping reserves, fracking and even dealing elsewhere in Latin America.

And, according to Haar, look to the American oil producers.

"Oil companies did not produce because of lack of demand during COVID and they can't find workers," he said. "If the U.S. is really serious about crippling the Russian economy, they should institute a complete boycott far stronger than what the U.S. has placed on  Cuba."

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