GOP Presidential Candidates and Cuba: The Weakest

I can’t say I am surprised to learn these two Republican candidates hold weak positions in regards to the Cuban dictatorship. We already know the divorced from reality excuses the Paulwellians will provide, but I am curious to hear what excuses the Gingrichonians will struggle to piece together.

Via Capitol Hill Cubans:

Weakest Candidates on Cuba Policy

For months, many have been asking which Republican presidential candidate is the strongest on Cuba policy.

That’s tough to answer.

So instead of analyzing who is the strongest, it’s probably easier to identify who are the weakest.

There are two.

First, Texas Congressman Ron Paul, who supports unilaterally lifting all sanctions towards Cuba and unconditionally normalizing relations with the Castro dictatorship.

As Paul selfishly concluded in 2007:

It’s time to stop talking solely in terms of what’s best for the Cuban people. How about the wishes of the American people, who are consistently in favor of diplomacy with Cuba? Let’s stop the hysterics about the freedom of Cubans — which is not our government’s responsibility — and consider freedom of the American people, which is.”

And secondly, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who has expressed his support for the Obama Administration’s policy of unlimited travel and remittances to Cuba (which has more than doubled the Castro regime’s foreign currency reserves).

As Gingrich revealed during a November interview with Yahoo News:

Q. President Obama has opened more air travel to the island. Would you shut down those flights?

Gingrich: No, but I would very aggressively move towards maximizing dissent inside Cuba. Mostly covert, and also just subsidies. Go back and look what we did in Poland for example when we aggressively supported Solidarity.”

It’s a zero-sum proposition (at best) to support dissent, while overwhelmingly financing Castro’s repression.

Fortunately, the rest of the field (congruently) supports strengthening the pro-democracy movement, while depriving the dictatorship of the hard-currency it desperately needs.

7 thoughts on “GOP Presidential Candidates and Cuba: The Weakest”

  1. I remember hearing Gingrich when he said this. I had yet to hear another candidate talk about using subversion and money to help Cubans fight the Castros. I thought he was alone in this idea.
    My only additional comment is that Gingrich has hired Rubio’s campaign manager and Gingrich is educable. He is willing to listen to arguments and change his mind. If someone could get to his new campaign manager, I believe Newt could be made to see the light.

  2. Also, what is our presumptive nominee’s policy statement on Cuba? I don’t know it. I have never heard him say anything about this. Are you assuming it is better than Newt’s? I would like to know what anyone knows about this.

  3. Romney will say all the right things. He’s got endorsements from Cuban-American Congresspeople and the support of well-heeled establishment Cubans in Florida. Jeb Bush is set to endorse him. In other words, he’ll get plenty of help in what to say regarding Cuba. What, if anything, it will actually mean is another matter.

  4. I have been hearing these trite political speeches and false promises since Richard Nixon said in 1967 that he would have invaded Cuba during the Bay of Pigs fiasco had he been president. When Nixon got elected in 1968, he reinforced the secret Kennedy-Khrushchev understanding, which is the cornerstone of U.S.-Cuba relations since 1962. All subsequent American presidents, including Reagan and Bush father and son, have refused to abrogate this understanding, which is still in effect today. None of the Republican presidential candidates are addressing this issue and the toughest anti-Castro talk we are hearing today from Gingrich is nothing more than the failed Reagan-Bush policies toward Cuba. The U.S. State Department is waiting for the Castro brothers to die within the next five years before resuming relations like they did with Vietnam and China.

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