Calling for an End to the Trade Embargo With Cubaby Representative Rosa L. DeLauro
Posted on 2015-12-31
in the house of representatives
Thursday, December 31, 2015
Ms. DeLAURO. Mr. Speaker, I rise to express my support for the
continued normalization of relations with Cuba and ending the embargo.
Today marks the one year anniversary since the historic announcement by
President Obama that the Cold War relations between the U.S. and Cuba
were officially coming to an end.
The reestablishment of diplomatic relations and increase in travel, commerce, information flows, and research collaboration will improve the lives of both the Cuban and American people. In the past year we have seen remarkable progress. Cuba has been removed from the list of state sponsors of terror, so that the State Department can more appropriately focus its resources on countries and regions where counter-terrorism efforts are critical. Embassies have been reopened in Washington and Havana. The Treasury and Commerce Departments continue to implement changes to make it easier to travel between our nations.
These efforts are critical steps to improve relations between the United States and the Cuban people but more must be done. The trade embargo, in place since 1960, must come to an end. This misguided policy to pressure the Cuban government into democracy has clearly failed. The President has pursued normalization of relations to the greatest extent possible under the law. Now, Congress must act.
Removing the embargo with Cuba could generate up to $365 million in additional American goods and would help to create thousands of new jobs in the United States, according to a study by Texas A&M University.
Last year on official visit to the island nation, I saw firsthand the innovative power of Cuban entrepreneurs, especially women who are opening small businesses, restaurants, and shops for the first time across the island. We can and should continue to build momentum for economic liberalization so that these women can access the tools and capital they need to expand and grow their enterprises.
I am proud to be a founding member of the re-launched bipartisan Cuba Working Group steering committee. It is time to support the Cuban people and create jobs here in the United States. I urge action in this body to remove the embargo so that we can fully engage with our neighbors across the Straits of Florida.