Sen. Rand Paul is separating himself from other possible 2016 presidential contenders, signaling tacit support for President Barack Obama’s move to begin normalizing relations with Cuba.
“In the end, I think opening up Cuba is probably a good idea,” Paul told Tom Roten on News Talk 800 WVHU in Huntington, West Virginia, the Associated Press reports.
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), three potential 2016 candidates for the Republican nomination, have all been outspoken in their opposition to the president’s Wednesday announcement.
Paul, however, sounded a different tone.
“The 50-year embargo just hasn’t worked,” he said. “If the goal is regime change, it sure doesn’t seem to be working and probably it punishes the people more than the regime because the regime can blame the embargo for hardship.”
Wednesday, in conjunction with the release of American aid worker Alan Gross and an unnamed spy for three Cuban spies, President Obama announced moves toward normalizing relations with Cuba.