"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Emerson Seeks to Ease Cuba Trade Restrictions

July 31st, 2007 by mopns · No Comments

By David Rogers

Anti-Castro lawmakers are delighted by a House vote last week rejecting efforts to ease restrictions on financing for U.S. agricultural exports to Cuba.

The 245-182 vote quashes speculation that the new Democratic Congress will change U.S.-Cuban policy substantially. “The message is very clear,” said Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart (R., Fla.). “There will be no possibility of a relaxation of sanctions until there is a democratic constitution in Cuba.”

Most striking, the fight came on an issue touching on agriculture — always a weak point for proponents of the U.S. trade embargo, which had been relaxed in the last years of the Clinton administration to allow U.S. exports of food and medicine. The Bush administration has imposed tough payment regulations, effectively requiring cash in advance of any shipment from American ports. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (R., Mo.) has waged a running battle in the annual Treasury Department appropriations bill to try to get Congress to override these rules and allow cash on delivery. Read More…

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