Cuban refugees

Just a week before he left office, President Barack Obama ended a long-standing refugee program, effectively banning certain people seeking freedom to come to America. As a result, thousands of refugees who try to come to the United States will now be sent directly back to an oppressive country where they face imprisonment, torture, and even death.

If you were unaware of that, it was because they were Cuban refugees. Both the media and Democrats said nothing in protest or outrage to President Obama. Suddenly, however, both are up in arms over President Donald Trump’s temporary ban on immigration from seven Muslim countries. That included admitting refugees from those countries until stricter vetting is installed.

On January 12, President Obama ended the “wet foot, dry foot” policy for residents of Cuba. The policy allowed any Cuban who set foot on American soil to be eligible for asylum and refugee status. The policy was established by Democratic President Bill Clinton in 1995. It extended policy initially created by Democratic President John Kennedy. The policy, however, didn’t sit well with Democratic President Barack Obama.

Why the ban on Cuban refugees?

President Obama ended the policy as a concession to the Cuban government with the lifting of sanctions in 2015.  President Obama visited the country a year ago as part of the lifting of sanctions. Even though sanctions have now ended, the Cuban government has made no human rights concessions. Cuban refugees who try to flee the country and are returned still face punishment.

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The reluctance to accept Cuban refugees may be tied to the fact that Cubans tend to support Republicans. Democrats, and President Obama in particular, have always been soft in dealing with the communist regime in Cuba. That earned the ire of Cuban refugees and their extended families in Florida. It may explain why both Donald Trump and Florida Senator Marco Rubio won their races there so easily.

Ironically, Obama’s abandoning of Cuban refugees took effect just as Donald Trump was taking the oath of office. On January 20, a group of 91 Cubans were sent back to the communist regime. ABC News reports.

Mexico has returned to Cuba the first contingent of Cuban migrants since former U.S. president Barack Obama decided Thursday to end a U.S. policy of granting residency to Cubans who arrive on U.S. soil.

Mexico’s National Immigration Institute said Friday it put 91 Cubans on a federal police airplane and flew them back to the island after the Cuban government accepted their return.

Mexico had actually been helping Cubans fleeing the country, but without U.S. support, Mexico was left no choice but to return them to Cuba.

Republicans call out the hypocrisy

Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) issued a statement critical of Democrats who are upset with President Trump. Diaz-Balart is of Cuban descent, as his parents escaped Castro’s regime. He pointed out that Democrats remained silent on Obama’s abandonment of Cuban refugees.

“I am struck by the double standard and hypocrisy of those who are offended by this executive order, but who failed to challenge President Obama when he took similar action against Cuban refugees, especially since President Obama’s action was meant to appease the Castro regime and not for national security reasons.”

Cubans have long relied on the “wet foot, dry foot” policy that granted them refugee status. In recent years, tens of thousands of Cubans have tried to escape the deteriorating situation there. The Guardian reports on the impact of Obama ending the Cuban refugees policy.

Since October 2012, more than 118,000 Cubans have presented themselves at ports of entry along the border, according to statistics published by the homeland security department. During the 2016 budget year, which ended in September, a five-year high of more than 41,500 people came through the southern border. An additional 7,000 people arrived between October and November.

The influx has created burdens on other countries in the region that must contend with Cubans who have yet to reach the US border, the official said.

The Cuban Medical Professional Parole Program, which was started by President George W Bush in 2006, is also being rescinded. The measure allowed Cuban doctors, nurses and other medical professionals to seek parole in the US while on assignments abroad.

None of that matters to Democrats, it seems. Who cares about Cuban refugees when there are radical Muslims to pander to, and a Republican president to criticize?

What do you think of the treatment of Cuban refugees by President Obama? Let us know in the comments!

H/T: The Guardian / Gateway Pundit

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