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Everything wrong with Obama's visit to Havana

Since 1959, Cuban Dictators Fidel and Raul Castro have been relentless in achieving two goals: (1) oppressing the Cuban people while growing the Cuban regime (2) undermining the United States and the American people.  President Obama’s recent changes to our relationship with Cuba is a win for the Cuban government and Obama’s legacy, and a loss for the Cuban and American people. By meeting with Castro's regime in Havana this weekend, President Obama has elevated his sympathies for the tyrannical Cuban government while further distancing himself from Cuban citizens. 

The Cuban people have been terrorized and exploited by a totalitarian regime, infamous in the western world for its flagrant human rights violations and political suppression. Even in the 21st century, Castro’s government allows public acts of repudiation in which political opponents are attacked in the street, and even the discussion of attempting outside travel can land a citizen in jail. 

This is why so many American citizens strongly oppose diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba. Yet by through his legacy-building visit to Havana, President Obama has further legitimatized Castro’s regime and opened a gateway into which the Cuban government can profit from U.S. tax-payer dollars.

Only two years ago, Obama proudly declared that he is "not interested in just validating the status quo" of the Cuban government, decrying the inexcusable abuse the government has administered upon its citizens over several decades. But as of this weekend, Obama has inexplicably turned back on his word. The Cuban government has by many accounts ramped up it's policies of suppression in recent years, including a "tenfold increased in Freedom of Religion based violations", gathering increased condemnations from the United Nations, but not from the Obama administration. Instead, President Obama seeks to reward the Castro regime by restoring trade relations that benefit the Cuban government substantially more than the Cuban or American people. 

 Today's "historic visit" is more like a historic failure for struggling, every day Cubans.  

It’s evident that President Obama has once again placed the interests of his personal legacy before those of the American people, and now the interests of the Cuban people are suffering as well. In 2013, the Cuban government was under investigation by the U.N. for trafficking weapons into North Korea. Just this year, the Colombian government seized a Chinese ship attempting to smuggle illegal arms into Cuba. All the while, over 2,000 political arrests have been made by the Cuban government since the President announced diplomatic relations with the regime in 2014. In light of these events, today's meeting between Castro and Obama seems nothing more than a orchestrated stunt to boost Obama's legacy, not to protect the rights of the Cuban people. 

Florida law makers have already spoken out against the President’s irresponsible actions with Cuba. Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a Cuban-American, stated that “The Castro regime continues its oppressive and recalcitrant policies which are the antithesis of our nation’s founding idea of freedom”, while Senator Marco Rubio tweeted "This is an Obama presidential trip whose ultimate results will be giving away legitimacy and money to an anti-American regime that actively undermines our national security interests and acts against our values every single day."

If we are going to stand with the Cuban people, we must stand against President Obama’s decision normalize relations with the Castro regime. The United States has never aligned itself with terrorist states, and now is not the time to start.

 Tell President Obama: Side with the American and Cuban People, not the Cuban Regime. Take Action Here