House Democrats managed to block a resolution on Thursday that would have officially condemned Bernie Sanders for his praise of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro. Following in the shameful footsteps of other occasions in which Democrats have united to protect the uglier members of their movement, left-wing lawmakers united to keep Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) from bringing to the floor a condemnation of the Vermont senator.

The resolution would have addressed remarks Sanders made on “60 Minutes” last weekend, where he told host Anderson Cooper that while, sure sure, the dictatorial aspects of Castro’s regime were to be frowned on, hey, the dude sure knew how to get his people a-readin! Normal Americans like Diaz-Balart, who know just how reprehensible and lethal the Castro regime has been, find it disgusting that Bernie could suggest that we look beyond the thousands of deaths and brutal oppression to focus on literacy rates.

In a statement explaining why she voted down the resolution, Florida Democratic Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell tried to have it both ways.

“This afternoon House Republicans attempted to use an underhanded maneuver to derail an important public health bill to protect our children from a vaping epidemic. It is shameful that they attempted to create a false choice between standing with the Cuban community and a generation of children whose health is at risk,” she said. “Instead, I co-sponsored a resolution to stand with the Cuban community and voted to advance a measure to protect our kids.”

Well, actually, your bill – which aims to ban all flavored vaping juices – is garbage and will be vetoed by President Trump if it even manages to get through the Senate. So there was no false choice here; you chose to vote for a bad bill that has no hope of becoming law and against an important stance against authoritarian communism – a FAR greater threat to our kids than friggin’ Juul pods.

The resolution condemned “the comments of Senator and Democratic Socialist Presidential Candidate, Bernie Sanders (I-VT), disregarding the history of systemic human rights abuses, forced indoctrination, and authoritarian actions of the literacy and education policies of the communist Castro dictatorship in Cuba.”

The next time Democrats try to act like they are distancing themselves from Sanders’ radical themes and his unacceptable fondness for murderous, tyrannical regimes, remind them of this vote. They decided it was more important to pass a meaningless nanny-state bill against vaping than to make a stand against the sickness eating their party alive. Sometimes the smallest gestures say so much.