Paul Ryan on Cuba Policy

Saturday, August 11, 2012
Upon arriving in Congress, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) was an unconditional free trader. Thus, Ryan initially opposed sanctions towards practically any country in the world, including Castro's Cuba.

To his credit, Ryan's position has evolved over the years, as he learned of the brutal realities of the Castro brothers. Moreover, Ryan recognized the fact that trade with the Castro's totalitarian regime would be neither free nor fair, as it holds a monopoly over political and economic power. As such, the Cuban people would be denied the benefits of such trade, while their oppressors would unduly benefit.

In 2007, Ryan voted against an amendment to the Farm Bill by U.S. Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-NY) that sought to ease financing and other restrictions on trade with the Castro regime.

That same year, he opposed efforts to cut funding for Cuba democracy programs.

Moreover, Ryan publicly withdrew his name from a bill seeking to allow unfettered travel between the U.S. and Cuba.

Since then, Ryan has consistently opposed Congressional efforts to unconditionally lift sanctions towards Cuba.