Report: GOP-Controlled Senate Panel Votes to Lift Cuba Travel Ban

Havana, Cuba // Photo by Joe Pike

The Associated Press is reporting that a GOP-controlled Senate panel has voted to lift a decades-long ban on travel to Cuba, giving a boost to President Barack Obama's moves to ease travel restrictions and open up relations with the Castro-governed nation.

According to the report, the Senate Appropriations Committee also voted to block enforcement of a law prohibiting banks and other U.S. businesses from financing sales of U.S. agricultural exports to Cuba.

The House Appropriations Committee has moved in the opposite direction, but the intra-party disagreement among Republicans makes it far less likely that the GOP-controlled Congress will try to use spending bills to challenge Obama's rapprochement with Cuba, according to the report. 

The House provision would block new rules issued in January that would significantly ease travel restrictions to Cuba and allow regularly scheduled flights for the first time.

For the full Associated Press story via ABC News, click here.

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