From the office of Rep. Jeff Flake (AZ):
Republican Congressman Jeff Flake, ranking member of the National Security and Foreign Affairs Subcommittee, today cautioned that a change in U.S. policy toward Cuba should not be preconditioned on action by the Cuban government.
In a press release:
“Our policy toward Cuba has been built on the faulty premise that the Cuban government favors an end to the travel ban and embargo,” said Flake. “Save for their rhetoric, there is little evidence that the Cuban government actually wants such an outcome. In fact, every time relations between the U.S. and Cuba appear to be warming, the Cuban government takes action, whether it be shooting down American planes or jailing dissidents, to ensure that the status quo is maintained.”
“I believe the most effective action the U.S. can take to hasten democratic reforms in Cuba is to loosen trade and travel restrictions. Clearly, the prospect of increasing commerce and contact hasn’t been a very successful carrot, but it might make a pretty effective stick.”
Congressman Flake, along with Congressman Bill Delahunt of Massachusetts, has introduced the Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act (H.R. 874). The bill has over 120 cosponsors.