But subsequent polling showed how volatile the issue remains, and the White House sat on its hands until the results were in.
Yesterday, the Cuba lobby lashed out at Obama and demonstrated the cards it would have played if the announcement had preceded the election: that Democrats "acquiesce", that the world is "less safe" as a result, that Obama is weak and that "rogue regimes can murder Americans, have US courts and juries duly convict those involved and see justice aborted by a stroke of the President's pen."
Our hearts go out to those who have suffered. There is no easing that pain. I know: my grandparents were murdered in the Holocaust.
There is no argument that holds up this remaining relic of the Cold War. President Obama pointed out yesterday that China and Vietnam have thrived and American companies have benefited from bilateral agreements even though they maintain their own forms of communism.
Yes, Cuba is only 90 miles away but the 2016 elections are even closer, and as a result of yesterday's decision, the GOP should be troubled by using Congress to continue to foment antagonism to Obama and Democrats, and by rigid positions that sound already like yesterday's war.