On Mon, Oct 5, 2009 at 8:59 AM, Senator Kohl wrote:
"As you may know, the U.S. has imposed a travel and economic embargo on Cuba since 1958 in response to Cuban President Fidel Castro's refusal to democratize and demonstrate greater appreciation for human rights. In light of President Fidel Castro's decision to step down, there has been some discussion on reviewing U.S. foreign policy toward Cuba.
"I understand your concerns about possible changes to U.S.-Cuba relations included in the recent Omnibus Appropriations Act of 2009. Section 620 of the Omnibus Appropriations Act amended the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000. This amendment would authorize changes for travel relating to commercial sales of agricultural and medical goods. However, the Obama administration has stated that they will disregard the amendment pending a further review of the embargo against Cuba.
"I assure you that there have been no significant changes to U.S. foreign policy related to Cuba. In the future, any changes in our relationship with Cuba will be made by the Obama administration with consultation from the U.S. Senate.
"Please know that I will keep your thoughts in mind should the topic be debated during the 111th Congress."
United States Senator
This response is an insult.
Your first sentence includes: "...the U.S. has imposed a travel and economic embargo on Cuba since 1958 in response to Cuban President Fidel Castro's refusal to democratize and demonstrate greater appreciation for human rights". Ignorant.
Why would you send me this kind of half-baked nonsense? In 1958, Fulgencio Batista was the thug "leader" of Cuba; he didn't give a damn about democratizing. He was a murderous, thieving pal of gangsters and of the American government. The travel ban and embargo were imposed years later, along with a four-decades-long program of CIA interference in Cuban affairs, including many attempts to assassinate Cuban leaders.
I asked you about your view of sponsorship of Senate Bill 428. You wrote back about Section 620 of the Omnibus Appropriations Bill. Unresponsive. Head fakes work under the basket, not in Congress.
We send you to Congress to work. We expect you to hire competent people who are able to read a letter and respond with something other than this uninformed, non-responsive "bedbug" letter. I've received letters like this one over your signature in the past: Vaguely in the same neighborhood of the subject, but non-committal, something for everyone.
Will you please have your staff return to my original letter, read it carefully and get me a responsive reply.
This whole business of sending form letters in response to real questions is--as I said--an insult to those of us who are up-to-date on the issues and ask pointed, well-informed questions.
Please, respond with real information.
A constituent, a voter...
Nicely done, Jim.
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