March 18, 2016

Congresswoman Barbara Lee Joins President Obama in Opening A New Chapter in U.S.-Cuba Relations

Oakland, CA – On Sunday, Congresswoman Barbara Lee will join President Obama on his historic trip to Cuba, the first trip by a sitting President in nearly 90 years. She released this statement:

“I am so honored to be joining the President for this historic visit to Cuba. Through his bold leadership, President Obama is helping chart a new course forward between our two nations and it’s past time for Congress to join him.

This visit is the next important step in ending more than 50 years of failed U.S. policy toward Cuba.

It is clear that renewed relations between the U.S. and Cuba will greatly benefit both the American and Cuban people. Ending the embargo will help create U.S. jobs by creating new markets for U.S. exports, especially from the agricultural and tech sectors.

This historic delegation should challenge Members of Congress to greater action to end the outdated and unpopular embargo and travel ban.

It’s past time for Congressional hardliners to listen to the American people; the vast majority support ending the counterproductive embargo and travel ban. After more than five decades of failed policy, it’s time to abandon isolationism in favor of engagement.”


Congresswoman Lee has been working on U.S.-Cuba policy since 1977 and has traveled to the island more than 20 times, including leading several Congressional delegations. Congresswoman Lee serves as a co-chair of the bipartisan Cuba Working Group. Congresswoman Lee is proudly co-sponsoring the bipartisan Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act (H.R. 664) to lift the travel ban and the Free Trade with Cuba Act (H.R. 403) to end the embargo. Learn more about the Congresswoman’s work by reading her nationally syndicated OpEd.


Congresswoman Lee is a member of the Appropriations and Budget Committees, the Steering and Policy Committee, is a Senior Democratic Whip, former chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and co-chair of the Progressive Caucus. She serves as chair of the Democrat Whip Task Force on Poverty, Income Inequality and Opportunity.