Florida leaders reacted to the death of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro early Saturday morning. 

Raul Castro made the announcement his brother had died on Cuban television on Saturday. He was 90 years old. Few details other than his death were available at the time of the announcement, but the former Cuban ruler’s health had declined in recent years. 

Fidel Castro sat at the helm of the Cuban government for years, holding onto power longer than any other living national leader except Queen Elizabeth II. 

Many Cubans fled to Florida and the U.S. during Castro’s reign. Now, they represent the third largest Hispanic group nationwide, with the majority living in Florida. 

Florida has the highest population of Cuban-Americans in the country, with 1.5 million living in the state as of 2015.

Here’s how Florida politicians reacted to the news:

Lieutenant Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera:

“Has it finally come? FIDEL IS DEAD! I pray this is beginning of a free and democratic Cuba. Wish my Abuelo & Abuela were alive to see this.”

U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen: 
“The day that the people, both inside the island and out, have waited for has arrived: A tyrant is dead and a new beginning can dawn on the last remaining communist bastion of the Western hemisphere.  The message is now very clear to those who think they will continue to misrule Cuba through oppression and fear. Enough is enough. The Cuban people have been shortchanged for too long to continue down this reviled path.

Those who still rule Cuba with an iron grip may attempt to delay the island’s liberation, but they cannot stop it.  Castro’s successors cannot hide and must not be allowed to hide beneath cosmetic changes that will only lengthen the malaise of the Cuban nation. No regime, no matter who leads it, will have a

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