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U.S. Must Take a Stand Against Cuba and Venezuela

June 7, 2017 - 6:00pm

In recent months, we have seen Venezuela slip into complete chaos. Under the brutal and oppressive dictatorship of Nicolas Maduro, we have seen things go from bad to worse. Food and medicine shortages, violence on the streets and economic uncertainty.

We've also seen companies like General Motors, Bridgestone and General Mills scale back their operations in Venezuela. Recently, United Airlines also joined in this effort by announcing it will suspend flights to Venezuela next month.

It's no wonder that these companies are pulling out of a country engulfed in violent political protests and economic chaos.

Venezuelans endure long lines to purchase basic necessities all while Maduro's dictatorship blames companies for the country’s shortages. The Maduro regime continues to mismanage the country's oil resources, has produced a swollen inflation rate and dismal exchange rate, leaving the Venezuelan people to deal with hardship and corruption.

This is not acceptable and we should not stand for these injustices to the Venezuelan people. The United States must stop doing business with Venezuela immediately.

The turmoil in Venezuela is eerily similar to events that have plagued the island nation of Cuba for decades. When President Obama moved to normalize relations with the Castro dictatorship many argued that the new relationship would be the beginning of a better life for the Cuban people. Yet two and half years later, repression is growing and the brutal crackdown of the peaceful opposition movement is most alarming.

This was the wrong move. A message must be sent to both the Maduro and Castro regimes and their gangs of thugs that the United States will not tolerate their continued aggressions.

Organizations like the Ladies in White and UNPACU are the constant targets of the Castro regime's violent rage. The anticipated "emerging private sector" (cuentapropistas) has actually decreased and tens of thousands of Cubans have attempted to flee the enslaved island in numbers not seen since 1994. In Venezuela, the Castro dictatorship continues to pull the strings, aiding the Maduro government's bloodbath against the heroic Venezuelan people.

Moreover, the Obama-Castro deal failed to prioritize America's interests. It purposely did not contemplate the certified claims of American citizens whose properties were stolen by Castro's regime; it allowed Cuba's trafficking of 240 tons of missile technology and other heavy weaponry with North Korea, and those responsible for it, to get away without consequence; it allowed companies to put American workers at a competitive disadvantage through deals with Cuba's state-owned entities, which employ forced and exploitative labor practices that are contrary to international norms; it ignored judicial claims of American victims of terrorism by Castro's regime and the cries for justice from American families whose killers are being harbored by Castro's regime. To add insult to injury, President Obama even commuted the life sentence of a Cuban spy that was convicted of conspiracy in the murder of three American citizens.

The approach for the new United States-Cuba policy should be a substantive shift. The current direction has proven to provide the Cuban military and state security the resources that will enable them to transfer power from one family member to another. The new course must be focused on doing our part so that the Cuban people may regain their right to self-determination.

Today I am encouraging President Trump to take a stand against these brutal dictatorships. President Trump and his Administration have the opportunity to set a new course. One that recognizes that the Cuban and Venezuelan people deserve to be free, and prioritizes human rights, democracy, security and the rule of law. This new course should serve as a beacon of hope for those brave activists in Cuba and Venezuela by making it clear that, if you are a Castro or Maduro government official involved in the violation of human rights, you will be prohibited from obtaining any immigrant or non-immigrant visa to the United States. I'm convinced that this new direction will better serve U.S. interests, generate genuine economic prosperity and help the Cuban and Venezuelan people achieve their long-awaited freedom.

Rick Scott, in his second term, is the 45th governor of Florida.


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THANK YOU Gov. Scott! We are so blessed to be in a state with a non-politician governor on the right side of history! And with a president finally in sync with us too! We cannot afford another Obamalaise failed socialist refugee crisis spilling over to Florida. Venezuela must NOT be allowed to go down the Cuba-Iran-Nork path of rogue state doom.

Fuck you Rick Scott!

How about you just do an honest day's work in Tallahassee before you start talking about the Nat'l stage dufus...

Hey "Truth", You've got a big problem. You have ZERO knowledge about the workings of State, much less National Politics. The Governor of Florida keeps Close Watch on Cuba and ALL South America... maybe you didn't know that our State is "very close" to these locations. I applaud Scott's tracking possible disruption of the safety of ALL America. Looks like you are the REAL "Dufus".

This is nothing 'new';...Venezuelan citizens (as well as Iranian citizens ) have fought (and lost) many times over for liberty & freedom; only to be suppressed each time by "Military Juntas" and evolving dictators. Cuba (our neighbor just 90 miles South) "took one shot" at freedom via the "Kennedy supported 'Bay of Pigs' FAILURE" and the 1962 "Cuban Missile Crisis" and BOTH Cuba AND America then "settled down" to ALLOW Communism "on their doorsteps". American politicians would rather send their "blood & treasure" (our YOUTH) to wars halfway around the globe on a "political Fool's errands" rather than tending decisively to "the Communist suppression on our doorstep". "Politics" is a "despicable game", and "Politicians" are the "despicable players" in that "game"... One need only to recall the times our Congressional Black Caucus Members have formed "Group vacation jaunts" to Cuba where they lauded the Castro's and the 'Communist way of life' on the Island: These are disgusting examples of our American Congress, on display for all to see ! IF we can't even do anything DECISIVE just 90 miles away,...then stay the Hell home and TEND TO OUR OWN PROBLEMS & DEBTS instead of ineffective posturing which only foments laughter among our adversaries as well as our allies.... WAKE UP AMERICA !...YOUR "POLITICAL ELITIST CLASS" HAS MADE YOU THE "LAUGHING STOCK" OF THE WORLD!!!!!! VOTE THEM OUT.....(The "Hillarys" and "Kerrys" and Obamas" and ilk and Bureaucrat minion Liberal Democrats have very nearly destroyed our REPUBLIC !) ! ! ! The "Time For Correction" is NOW !

Thank you for your concern about our situation here. We need all the help possible to erradicate this cancer from our country and Latin America.

I guess this absurd reasoning of a Governor hasn't anything made by slave labor in communist China. One of the most brutal regimes in the world.

Mr. McManus: In light of your pointing out that China is Not a Paradise, I'm sure you NEVER purchase CHINESE MADE goods. Perhaps you need to gather more detailed information about the Communist government of China compared to how the "governments" of Cuba and Venezuela treat their people... these countries are truly EVIL. And China? Not at all "Good", but the situation there is by FAR a weaker form of Communism, where most of the population is not in fear for their lives' and in NO WAY work as "Slaves", but as lower class PAID workers. Also, China is a MAJOR WORLD NUCLEAR POWER --- hardly akin to those south of "America". They also are an accepted TRADE PARTNER, and we keep close control of the exchange rates so that they do not gain even MORE power. Would you prefer that America trade with Russia, or North Korea instead? You are either misinformed or uninformed...

Governor, you are correct in assessing that both regimes, in Cuba and Venezuela, are intent in destroying their economies and human rights for their populations. In fact, Cubans are present in the Maduro government. Cuban operatives are murdering opposition party members in Caracas and beyond. Repression in Cuba has actually increased since 2014. After 50 years, it is clear that the Castro regime has no intention to reform their system of governance. Hope is never a strategy. It's time we recognize that negotiating with despots is a zero sum game.

You're right "Luis";... It has to be "You're either ALL IN" for the duration,... Or "take your chips and go home"!

Governor...if you would pay as much attention to the brutality of Israel against the Palestinians as you do against Ven& Cuba we could have peace in the middleeast. I guess you're looking forward to the Jewish donations as you run for the Senate. p.s. Tomorrow June 8th is the 50th anniversary of the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty! for info about the movie which is being made. As with the assassination of JFK the truth will be revealed.

"Peace in the Mid East"? Based on CURRENT day Israel and Palestine? I think you might have to deal with ISIS to achieve this Lofty goal. As for "past experience", I seem to remember that the Japanese attacked America at Pearl Harbor in 1944. Remember? That incident ended with a true enemy surrendered, and we TRADE and are AMICABLE with them now. Study up, Barb.

At the time, the "Fundamentalist" Japanese were dealt with by Pres. Truman (to prevent YEARS of fighting them on Pacific islands) with two overwhelming ATOMIC bombs (on Hiroshima and Nagasaki) causing the Japanese to surrender...and the Japanese Emperor (who had never even been seen by the Japanese people) to be brought into the "public sunlight" (no longer revered as a GOD)... Japan, afterwards became one of our staunchest allies . I believe "The Truman Solution" is the ONLY one capable of defeating FUNDAMENTALIST ISLAM...once and for all. Bomb, and destroy totally, one city at a time until ISIS the Middle East begs to surrender and live peaceably in the world.... NO SURRENDER,..NO MERCY !

"Barb", consider this: "The black flags will come from the East, led by mighty men, with long hair and beards, their surnames taken from their hometowns." THE HADITH ----- This is "religious fundamentalism" as well as "Sharia Law" being described for ALL the prospective conquered peoples. WAKE UP Lady, you are an "appeaser"; and the sad part is: you are not alone among the American population. Too many of our "protected & coddled from birth" young men have taken to the fashion of "long hair and full beards" that they think makes them look "tough, strong and manly", when in fact, they are NOT, and rather invite ridicule, contempt and social avoidance, making them, in effect, pariahs. To emulate your enemy is to support your enemy's philosophy and intent. But, these "group attendance trophy winners" from grammar school don't have a clue about life, or its hardships...yet, and earn and deserve any enmity coming their way !

Barb, the land that Isreal currently has is not all of the land that Isreal was promised by God in the Bible. And God does not break his promises. Jerusalem is the Capitol of Isreal, according to the Bible and is God's city. Read in Genesis in Bible about the covenant and promise to Abraham about the land and it's dimensions promised to Abraham and God's chosen people, the Jews.

I believe restitution issues regarding covenants between God and Abraham are outside of the Florida Governor's jurisdiction.

Better start working in that Ark "F1"...

Cuba has vaccines for diabetes and cancer. We need their expertise!

I don't believe Cuba's regime should be equated to Venezuela's. Raul Castro is no where near as bad a thug as Maduro.

EVERYTHING is "relative"... "ted"

Why we tolerate and prop up totalitarian regimes in our hemisphere has always been a mystery to me.

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