As he campaigns in his bid to replace retiring Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in Florida’s 27th congressional district, Florida Representative David Richardson is heading to Cuba in order to “better connect with a large constituency.” This is his mission as he embarks on a two-day “listening tour” where he hopes to “learn more about economic and societal developments” in Cuba after President Obama’s decision in 2014 to roll back on travel and trade restrictions that were set around 60 years ago.
His campaign also announced that he will not be meeting with anyone from the Cuban government in the two days that he will be in Cuba.
In a statement Richardson explained that “A half-century of isolation did not achieve progress for the everyday Cuban, so I fully support a position of engagement with Cuban civil society. Despite President Trump’s attempts at reversing his predecessor’s progress on foreign policy, I am going to see firsthand how rolling back travel and trade restrictions has changed the lives of the Cuban people, helped private Cuban entrepreneurs, and strengthened the connection between the residents of Little Havana and Havana.”
This is also noted as the first time a congressional candidate has made a campaign stop in Cuba.