Governor Hutchinson, Congressman Crawford React to Trump's Policy Change on Cuba

LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- On Friday, President Donald Trump announced that he will tighten travel restrictions and block business with Cuba,, following his decision both Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson and State Representative Rick Crawford reacted  to the change.

Trump's announcement on Cuba followed up an earlier campaign promise of his , which was , "enforce the ban on tourism, enforce the embargo, we will take concrete steps to ensure that investments flow directly to the people so they can open private business and begin to build their country’s great, great future.”

However, that was not all. He also added a  promise by saying that the United States ," will very strongly restrict American dollars flowing to military, security and intelligence services that are the core of the Castro regime."

President Trump's decision garnered both criticism and praise. A highlight of the praise came from Gov. Hutchinson as he released the following statement:

“As Governor, I have continually stated that lifting the Cuban embargo isn’t an all-or-nothing approach. The Cuban government has violated human rights for more than 50 years, and I applaud the president’s efforts to maintain political pressure on a regime that stands in contrast with the very values of the United States. As President Trump pointed out in his speech earlier today, he intends to keep the U.S. embassy open ‘in hope that our countries can forge a much stronger’ relationship in the future. This is the right decision. I would urge the Administration and Congress to focus on constructive policy with Cuba that would benefit Americans, especially Arkansas-based agriculture, by lifting the credit restrictions on agriculture. There is a tremendous opportunity for success in Cuba for Arkansas farmers, and the lifting of credit restrictions on agriculture is a logical first step.”

While Rep. Rick Crawford was quite the opposite as he tweeted his concerns on Friday afternoon.

“I strongly oppose President Trump’s decision to reinstate a failed, outdated, and isolationist posture towards Cuba. This policy change is not just a missed opportunity for rural America, which would greatly benefit from increased access to the island’s $2B agricultural imports market. This policy shift also poses an unjustifiable risk to our national security, as further U.S. disengagement opens up opportunities for countries like Iran, Russia, North Korea, and China to gain influence on an island 90 miles off our coast. Finally, restricting travel and trade and limiting our ability to export American democracy and values will hinder efforts to improve human rights and religious liberties in Cuba. I strongly urge reconsideration of this decision, and as policy changes continue, I will work with the President to find more productive ways to bring about the changes we all want to see in Cuba.”


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