GOP member and House Speaker Paul Ryan promised that no matter the outcome of the election on Nov 8, the U.S. Congress will ensure that the trade restrictions between the U.S. and Cuba will not be lifted. As noted by Ryan, maintaining this embargo is an essential move to protect the intellectual property rights of private business owners and other U.S. companies operating in Cuba.
The U.S. government first imposed the embargo to limit the country’s exports to Cuba in 1960 shortly after the fall of former dictator Fulgencio Batista’s regime. However, after President Barack Obama revealed in 2014 that his administration is moving forward with normalizing the country’s relations with Cuba, there have been talks about lifting the ban.
Last week, the White House said that it aims to remove the embargo to ease the travel and financial restrictions in Cuba. In doing so, the Obama administration believes American businessmen and travelers will be able to benefit more by enjoying Cuba’s local offerings, Reuters reported.
However, the embargo can only be lifted through the full support of the Congress, which Ryan and the GOP currently controls. Whether Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton becomes the next president of the country, Ryan and the Republican members of the congress will ensure that the trade restrictions stay in place.
According to the House Speaker, it is important to maintain the embargo to protect the assets of U.S. companies in Cuba to avoid going through the same events that happened five decades ago. After all, the trade ban was imposed in 1960 after Cuba decided to nationalize the American-owned oil refineries operating in the country without proper compensation.
Ryan also said that Obama’s administration is only pushing for the embargo to be lifted in order to appease the communist party currently ruling Cuba.
“As the past two years of normalizing relations have only emboldened the regime at the expense of the Cuban people, I fully intend to maintain our embargo on Cuba,” Ryan said in a statement.