Ted Cruz: Obama’s New Cuba Policy ‘Will Be Remembered as a Tragic Mistake’

The junior senator from Texas, whose father emigrated from Cuba, said Wednesday that Obama’s announcement is seriously misguided.

Rebecca Nelson
Add to Briefcase
Rebecca Nelson
Dec. 17, 2014, 12:23 p.m.

Hours after his Sen­ate col­league and fel­low Cuban-Amer­ic­an Marco Ru­bio cri­ti­cized Pres­id­ent Obama’s change in U.S. policy on Cuba, Ted Cruz broke his si­lence on the news with a bang, call­ing the de­cision “a tra­gic mis­take.”

The Re­pub­lic­an sen­at­or from Texas told Fox News’ Neil Cavuto on Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon that be­cause of the Amer­ic­an em­bargo and dip­lo­mat­ic freeze-out, Cuba had been “gasp­ing for air.” Now, though, Obama’s policy shift would have dev­ast­at­ing ef­fects.

“Just like the ad­min­is­tra­tion did with Ir­an, right when the [Ir­a­ni­an] ad­min­is­tra­tion was feel­ing the max­im­um pain, [Obama] throws them an eco­nom­ic life­line and con­tin­ues the bru­tal re­pres­sion and dic­tat­or­ship of the Castro broth­ers,” said Cruz, whose fath­er emig­rated from Cuba in 1957, four years be­fore the U.S. im­posed a strict trade em­bargo on the coun­try.

When Cavuto poin­ted out that more than five dec­ades of the same policy hadn’t been very ef­fect­ive, Cruz de­murred. “What it has wrought is lim­it­ing the im­pact and harm of Cuba,” he said.

Cruz also cri­ti­cized the pres­id­ent’s for­eign policy strategy as a whole, slam­ming what he called Obama’s in­ab­il­ity to dis­cern the “dif­fer­ence between our friends and our en­emies.”

“This pres­id­ent be­lieves ap­pease­ment works,” he said. “When it comes to deal­ing with tyr­ants and bul­lies, wheth­er it is [Rus­si­an Pres­id­ent Vladi­mir] Putin, wheth­er it is Ir­an, or wheth­er it is the Castros in Cuba, he be­lieves that a po­s­i­tion of weak­ness is how we should ne­go­ti­ate, and that doesn’t work.”

Cruz, a likely 2016 can­did­ate, made sure to con­trast the “Obama-Clin­ton-Kerry for­eign policy,” as he called it—a new spin on his usu­al “Obama-Clin­ton” line—with his own doc­trine of “peace through strength.” And in an­oth­er re­mind­er of his seem­ingly in­ev­it­able run for the pres­id­ency, Cruz told Cavuto that in 2016, Re­pub­lic­ans shouldn’t nom­in­ate an­oth­er mod­er­ate can­did­ate—pre­sum­ably like former Flor­ida Gov. Jeb Bush, who an­nounced Tues­day that he is ser­i­ously con­sid­er­ing a White House bid.

“What we’re do­ing isn’t work­ing,” Cruz said. “If we nom­in­ate an­oth­er can­did­ate in the mold of a Bob Dole or John Mc­Cain or Mitt Rom­ney—and let me be clear, all three of them are good, hon­or­able, prin­cipled men—but it isn’t work­ing. The same voters who stayed home in ‘08 and ‘12 will stay over­whelm­ingly in ‘16, and Hil­lary Clin­ton is the next pres­id­ent. And that will do ir­re­par­able dam­age to the coun­try.”

As if the news of a thaw in U.S. re­la­tions with Cuba wasn’t wor­ri­some enough for Re­pub­lic­ans.

What We're Following See More »
ARMS CONTROL, SYRIA WERE DISCUSSED
Russians Refer to "Verbal Agreements" with Trump
7 hours ago
THE LATEST

"Two days after President Trump’s summit with Russian President Vladi­mir Putin, Russian officials offered a string of assertions about what the two leaders had achieved. 'Important verbal agreements' were reached at the Helsinki meeting, Russia’s ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov, told reporters in Moscow Wednesday, including preservation of the New Start and INF agreements," and cooperation in Syria.

Source:
WAS "GRUDGINGLY" CONVINCED
Trump Was Shown Proof of Russian Interference Before Inauguration
7 hours ago
THE LATEST

"Two weeks before his inauguration, Donald J. Trump was shown highly classified intelligence indicating that President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia had personally ordered complex cyberattacks to sway the 2016 American election. The evidence included texts and emails from Russian military officers and information gleaned from a top-secret source close to Mr. Putin, who had described to the C.I.A. how the Kremlin decided to execute its campaign of hacking and disinformation. Mr. Trump sounded grudgingly convinced, according to several people who attended the intelligence briefing. But ever since, Mr. Trump has tried to cloud the very clear findings that he received on Jan. 6, 2017, which his own intelligence leaders have unanimously endorsed."

CONCERNS REAL ESTATE DEAL WITH HALIBURTON CHAIRMAN
Interior Department Inspector Opens Probe Into Zinke
11 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

"The Interior Department’s internal watchdog has opened a formal investigation into a real estate deal involving a foundation established by Ryan Zinke and developers including Halliburton Chairman David Lesar, which was first reported by Politico, according to a letter sent to lawmakers Wednesday."

Source:
TAKE THAT, HATERS
Trump: High IQ People Loved the Putin Meeting
19 hours ago
THE LATEST
"POLICY DIFFERENCES DON'T MATTER"
Comey Says to Vote Democratic This Fall
1 days ago
THE LATEST
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login