USA*Engage Implores Congress to Uphold Lifting Cuba Travel Ban in Appropriations Bill

Wednesday, 29 October 2003

"This Appropriations bill should go to the White House with the Cuba travel amendments included, as Members in both Houses of Congress clearly intend," said Bill Reinsch, Co-chairman of USA*Engage and president of the National Foreign Trade Council. "This year's decisive votes in the House and Senate on the Cuban travel ban clearly show that the time has come to open Americans' access to a country that has been off-limits for more than 40 years. Americans should not be denied their fundamental right to travel, and the Cuban people should not continue to live in unneeded isolation from the U.S."

Allowing Americans the freedom to travel to Cuba will have dramatic and positive effects on U.S. efforts to bring freedom and democracy to the people of Cuba. By de-funding enforcement of the Cuba travel ban, both the Dorgan/Craig and Flake amendments are key instruments toward achieving that goal.

"Lawmakers must continue to push ahead in supporting this legislation" said Reinsch. "The language of both amendments is clear and the votes to pass them were decisive. All that remains is for the full Congress to recognize that Americans want an end to this futile Cuba policy and to pass the appropriations bill to reflect that desire - to take on a policy of engagement with a country that so desperately needs our influence."

 

USA*ENGAGE is a coalition of over 670 small and large businesses, agriculture groups and trade associations working to seek alternatives to the proliferation of unilateral U.S. foreign policy sanctions and to promote the benefits of U.S. engagement abroad. For more information on USA*ENGAGE and the harmful effects of unilateral trade sanctions, visit the USA*ENGAGE web site at www.usaengage.org.