Congress mulls response on Cuba

Congress mulls response on Cuba 

Posted: 12:58 pm Thursday, December 18th, 2014

By Jamie Dupree

In the aftermath of President Obama’s announcement that he would move to normalize relations with Cuba, there are a number of things the Congress could do to bolster – or block – efforts by the Obama Administration to deal with the Castro regime.

Lawmakers most certainly could use their “power of the purse” to attempt to hamstring the President’s moves, and that was already being discussed by some GOP lawmakers.

As I wrote in a blog earlier this week, lawmakers could use a simple spending prohibition known as, “None of the funds,” in order to block money from going to opening a new embassy or to change existing administrative details on the economic embargo or travel ban against Cuba.

And it would seem that measures to roll back the President’s moves certainly have the support of top Republicans.

But the GOP opposition is not total, as key parts of the Republican coalition, like the Chamber of Commerce and major agricultural groups support the idea of opening trade, and even totally lifting the embargo against Cuba.

““Improving trade relations between the U.S. and Cuba will expand access to a market of 11 million consumers for U.S. agriculture,” said Bob Stallman, the President of the American Farm Bureau Federation.

“That’s good for Cuba and good for America, too.”

Cuba ricochets into GOP Presidential race

Breaking with others who might be running for President, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) told a radio station on Thursday that he supports the idea of opening trade with Cuba, putting him at odds with others like Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio.

“In the end, I think opening up Cuba is probably a good idea,” Paul told WVHU Radio in Huntington, West Virginia.

Critics of Paul have long questioned his foreign policy views, a reminder of the criticism his father leveled against his father, Ron Paul.

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