In an all too rare show of bipartisanship, a group of Democrats and Republicans have proposed lifting the trade embargo on Cuba.

U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and Jeff Flake (R-AZ) led the coalition to introduce the legislation to lift the embargo which has been in effect since the Kennedy Administration.

In the words of a press release from Senator Enzi's office, "The Freedom to Export to Cuba Act of 2017 would pave the way for new economic opportunities for American businesses and farmers by boosting U.S. exports and allow Cubans greater access to American goods. The legislation repeals key provisions of previous laws that block Americans from doing business in Cuba, but does not repeal portions of law that address human rights or property claims against the Cuban government."

“Over the last 50 years, our strategy of isolating Cuba hasn’t been very successful,” Enzi said. “This bipartisan legislation would lift the travel restriction to Cuba, providing new opportunities for American businesses, farmers and ranchers. But trade is very powerful. It can be more than just the flow of goods, but also the flow of ideas – ideas of freedom and democracy are the keys to positive change in any nation. It is time we moved on from the failed ideas of the past and tried a new approach to Cuba.”

Lifting the embargo opens the island of 11-million people to US farm exports, which they need to survive. And tourism allows both US tourists and tourism investments there as well. Farm trade alone could mean another $2-billion for American farmers a year.



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