It appears that morals and integrity are not the only attributes sorely missing from Sen. Jeff “Cuba flake” Flake’s character. You can add a sense of humor to that list as well.
Cuban-American senator didn’t think Arizona senator’s joke was funny
An Arizona Senator’s joke that allowing U.S. spring break revelers to travel to Cuba would amount to a real “get-tough” policy against the Castro government drew a stinging rebuke from Cuban American Sen. Bob Menendez.“I had no intention of raising it, but, you know, to suggest that spring break is a form of — a form of torture to the Castro regime — unfortunately, they are experts about torture,” Menendez said as he closed a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing.
Earlier in the hearing Thursday to confirm Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., as secretary of state, Jeff Flake, an Arizona Republican and long-time advocate of normalizing relations with Cuba, had cracked a joke about the best way to deal with the communist government.
“The best way to foster change and progress toward democracy is to allow travel, free travel of Americans, to let them go as they wish,” he said. “In fact, I’ve often felt that if we want a real get-tough policy with the Castro brothers, we should force them to deal with spring break once or twice.”
Flake said he favors fully open travel to Cuba.
“I don’t think that that’s a weakness or any capitulation at all,” he said. “I think it’s a way to show strength.”
The idea that bikini-clad and drunken college kids on spring breaks might push Cuba’s 54-year-old dictatorship toward democracy drew laughter in the chamber but angered Menendez, who is all but certain to succeeded Kerry as committee chairman.
In 2012 alone, Cuban police carried out a record 6,600 short-term arrests of peaceful dissidents such as the Ladies in White, female relatives of former political prisoners, noted the New Jersey Democrat who favors strong U.S. sanctions on the island.
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