Gloria Estefan has defended her decision to invite U.S. President Barack Obama to her Florida home for a political fundraiser in aid of the Democratic Party.
The Cuban singer and her husband Emilio invited Obama to host the Democratic National Committee event at her Miami Beach home on Thursday (15Apr10), sparking fury along Cuban-American locals who support the rival Republican Party.
Estefan insists she is "not affiliated" with any political party and used the evening to speak with Obama about issues important to the Cuban community.
Speaking on Larry King Live on Thursday, Estefan explained, "We're still nonpartisan. I am not affiliated. The bottom line is that if the White House calls and says, 'We're coming to Miami...', what more of an honour for a Cuban-American immigrant that came here when I was two years old, than to have the President of the United States in my home and to be able to speak to him about some of the things we have been doing?"
Estefan reveals she discussed the Cuban opposition movement Ladies in White with the President, and even showed him pictures of violence against the group.
She adds, "I was able to show him pictures of the march that we had, pictures of the Ladies in White in Cuba getting violently beaten by the police and thrown into a bus.
"I gave him a letter from a (Cuban) martyr of recent times (and) I was able to talk to him about that, give him letters from the mother of the dead dissident... We had a good talk. Then I introduced him. In my introduction, I said a lot of the things I wanted him to hear. He was standing right by me, as was everyone here at the party. So it was a wonderful night for us."