Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Will Democratic Congress Bring Us Closer to Cuba?

The move to break down barriers between the United States and Cuba may get a boost from the new Democratic Congress. At least that's the hope of Reps. like William Delahunt of Massachusetts.

U.S. Rep. William Delahunt, a leader in the fight to end sanctions against
Cuba, says the push to end the U.S. travel ban to the island nation will get a
boost in the new Democratic-controlled Congress.

The Massachusetts Democrat, fresh from a weekend visit to Cuba as part of a
congressional delegation, said Monday he and other House members planned
hearings early next year to spotlight the issue and to build momentum for their

"If we have hearings, we can increase the pressure for ending the ban,"
said Delahunt, a member of the House International Relations Committee. "These
will be important hearings."

This will provide Republicans with an opportunity to draw a stark distinction between themselves and Dems. Look for Reps. Diaz-Balart and Ros-Lehtinen to lead the opposition to the Closer-to-Castro group.
"You have a group of members of Congress who want to unilaterally give the
regime what it wants, which is billions of dollars in U.S. trade and tourism,"
said Diaz-Balart, a longtime supporter of the U.S. embargo on Cuba. "Every year
we fight."

Delahunt was one of a group of members of Congress that traveled to Cuba this weekend. Like the U.S. Senators that traveled to Syria, the visitors to Cuba were used by the despotic government to sell the party line - Castro is not dying and will return to power. Our Congress is beginning to look like the office of public relations to despots everywhere.

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