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Progressive Dems turn up their nose at chance to support Cuban protesters

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Congressional Democrats, some of who think they’re oppressed, almost managed to screw over one group of genuinely oppressed people this week. Sadly, they did succeed in screwing over another group.

The first group of genuinely oppressed people were the Cuban citizens who’ve been protesting peacefully against their government.

Forty House Democrats (and zero Republicans) voted Wednesday against a resolution “expressing solidarity” with the freedom fighters, condemning the nation’s oppressive government and calling for the release of unfairly detained Cubans.

All members of the so-called “progressive squad” of radical Democrats were among them. House Judiciary Committee chair Jerry Nadler and House Financial Services Committee chair Maxine Waters also vetoed the bill.

Florida Rep. Mario Díaz-Balart, one of three Republican co-sponsors, was appalled.

In a statement to NBC News, he said the opposition to the bill from both the “squad” and also top Democrats like Nadler and Waters proves “how extreme the leadership in the Democratic Party is.”

The resolution was prompted in part by a recent Human Rights Watch report about how the nation’s government “has systematically engaged in arbitrary detention, ill-treatment of detainees, and abuse-ridden criminal prosecutions in response to overwhelmingly peaceful anti-government protests in July 2021.”

Incidentally, plenty of American liberal Democrats have argued that anyone who’d merely organized or attended the peaceful Jan. 6th “Stop the Steal” rally should receive the same treatment as those who’d participated in the Jan. 6th riot.

“On July 11 thousands of Cubans took to the streets across the country in landmark demonstrations protesting longstanding restrictions on rights, scarcity of food and medicines, and the government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Cuban authorities responded by arresting hundreds of protesters and bystanders, including well-known critics and ordinary citizens,” according to the HRW.

“Officers routinely subjected many of them to brutal abuses, including gender-based violence, in detention, and prosecuted dozens in trials that violated basic due process guarantees. At least one protester died. Hundreds remain in prison or under house arrest, including some children under age 18,” the organization notes.

Rep. Jim McGovern, one of the 40 Democrats who’d voted to stick it to the Cubans, claimed in a statement published after the vote that he does “stand in solidarity” with them but refuses to slam the Cuban government without also slamming the U.S.

But he didn’t want to slam the U.S. for its war on domestic terrorism that some critics have said so closely mirrors the authoritarian impulses of nations like Cuba. He wanted to slam the U.S. because he blames the oppression faced by the Cubans on America.

Look:

A day after the vote on the resolution, which did thankfully still make it through the House, a report emerged that Democrats had stripped a provision from the Build Back Better bill that would have punished organizations linked to the enslavement and genocide of the Uyghur Muslims in China.

“A component of the massive spending package advanced by the Science Committee in early September included a ‘forced labor prohibition’ barring the National Science Foundation, which would receive an additional $11 billion under the legislation, from ‘awarding a contract, subcontract, grant, or loan to an entity that is listed’ according to the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act,” according to National Review.

The original provision had “required Congress to compile a list of Chinese companies involved in operating Uyghur concentration camps or in the mass-surveillance system in Xinjiang.”

The provision barely made it through the House Science Committee, because “most Democrats” voted against it, according to NRO.

But apparently, Democrats later stripped it from the BBB plan, which raises the question of why they “want to give taxpayer dollars to corporations using Uyghur Muslim slaves,” as asked below by Rep. Jim Banks.

A House Republican staffer told NRO that Democrats likely removed the provision in deference to business groups, including those linked to solar energy.

And indeed, two months ago Politico ran a report admitting that business groups were at the time “campaigning against congressional and White House moves to toughen trade and financial rules in response to China’s human rights abuses.”

Vivek Saxena

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