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WH Official: Trump Is Open To A Deal With Cuba, Just Not A ‘Bad Deal’

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President Donald Trump will announce travel and business restrictions with Cuba in a Friday speech in Miami, White House officials told reporters Thursday.

The new policies will prohibit doing business with institutions controlled by Cuban military or intelligence and will end the “people to people” travel program, which the Obama administration laxly enforced and essentially allowed tourism.

A White House official said that the policies will “not target Cuban people but oppressive members of the Cuban government.” An official said that the president was worried that current policies were enriching the Cuban military.

A former Obama administration official told The Daily Caller that essentially every business on the island is controlled by the Cuban military. The Trump administration started a Cuban policy review in February, which included several cabinet agencies that will develop regulations to enforce the White House’s Cuba policy.

The Daily Caller previously reported that the policy change is due to the behind-the-scenes work of Cuba policy hardliners, and a White House official described Florida Sen. Marco Rubio as “central” to the new Cuban stance. Sources with knowledge of the situation have told The Daily Caller that Rubio got the concession from Trump by promising to back Rex Tillerson for secretary of state.

President Trump told TheDC in 2015 that he was open to ending the Cuban embargo, but on the campaign trail said he would reverse Obama’s changes. Former President Obama re-established diplomatic ties, ended the “wet foot, dry foot” policy that gave Cuban illegal immigrants a path to citizenship, made it easier to do business on the island, and loosened travel restrictions.

A White House official said that Trump will not reinstate the “wet foot, dry foot” policy and that diplomatic relations will remain. Reporters were told that Trump is open to a deal with Cuba, but that he doesn’t support the current “bad” agreement.

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