Relations with Cuba
• repeal the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (Libertad, or Helms-Burton) Act of 1996; • repeal the Cuban Democracy (Torricelli) Act of 1992; • restore the policy of granting Cuban refugees political asylum in the United States; • eliminate or privatize Radio and TV Marti; • end all trade sanctions on Cuba and allow U.S. citizens and companies to visit and establish businesses in Cuba as they see fit; and • move toward the normalization of diplomatic relations with Cuba.
In 1970, 17 of 26 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean had authoritarian regimes. Today, only Cuba has a dictatorial regime. Although the transition to market-oriented democracies, which protect individual liberty and property rights under the rule of law, is far from complete in any of the region's countries and will be a long-term process, that transition is already leading to greater political stability and economic prosperity. Economic sanctions have not been responsible for the region-wide shift toward liberalization, however. They have, in fact, failed to bring about democratic regimes anywhere in the hemisphere, and Cuba has been no exception. Indeed, Cuba is the one country in the hemisphere against which the U.S. government has persistently and actively used a full economic embargo as its main policy tool in an attempt to compel a democratic transformation.
The failure of sanctions against Cuba should come as no surprise since sanctions are notorious for their unintended consequences—harming those they are meant to help. In Cuba, Fidel Castro is the last person to feel