John Boozman is a conservative Republican U.S.Senator from Arkansas. He also wants to end the Cuba embargo and wrote an op-ed about it.
The Obama administration has made excellent progress on the path to restoring trade with our Cuban neighbors, but we are now at the point where any further progress is dependent on leaders in Congress. We are lucky to have strong representation in Arkansas, from Gov. Asa Hutchinson to Sen. John Boozman and Rep. Rick Crawford, each of whom has come out in support of expanded trade opportunities for businesses and industries like mine. However, we need additional champions in Congress to continue this momentum to normalize trade so that Cuba can once again become a major U.S. trading partner.
I find it really interesting that he a) consciously praises President Obama; and b) does not mention human rights or anything about Cuban politics at all. It is a purely capitalist argument, whereby Arkansan farmers are being disadvantaged and as their representative he wants to correct that. Period.
This isn't new in and of itself. Republican governors have led trade delegations to Cuba for years. But Obama's policy shift has made the bipartisan possibility even more apparent. The political sands that serve as the foundation of the Cuba embargo are shifting.