January 25th, 2008
02:25 PM ET
10 years ago

Huckabee says Cuba immigration policy should stay

(CNN) - Earlier this month, Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said he favored a hiatus on immigration from countries that appear on the State Department’s list of terror-sponsoring nations, including North Korea, Sudan, Syria and Cuba.

But campaigning in Miami’s Little Havana on Friday, he seemed to describe a slight amendment to that position, endorsing the existing U.S. policy which allows Cuban refugees who set foot in the country to remain here.

"We have a very distinct policy when it relates to Cuba one that I think we should continue, and that is if you get a foot on dry soil you should be able to come here,” said Huckabee. “I wouldn't do anything to change that policy one iota. My policy on Cuba has been absolutely crystal clear, and we wouldn't change that."

Cuban-Americans are a major voting bloc in Tuesday’s GOP primary in Florida.

–CNN’s Eric Fiegel and Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Florida • Mike Huckabee
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. Alice Newman Center Harbor NH

    ... now Mike is pandering to the Cuban-Americans ... who obviously don't often consider themselves Americans first ...with a Cuban heritage....

    and people thought Mike didn't know anything about foreign countries or foreign policy!!!

    January 25, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  2. pam Eugene OR

    And if you believe that...

    January 25, 2008 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  3. mr.fair tax

    GEAUX ROMNEY, HE CAN BEAT HER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 25, 2008 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  4. Mike, Cleveland, OH

    Wet foot/Dry foot policy is still illegal immigration. I'm a proud liberal but I support a strong immigration policy. Enforce the rules of illegal immigration and get rid of wet foot/dry foot policy. Why should we allow people from one country to remain here because they came from Cuba, but everyone else has to back?

    If you say, "Well Cuba is a Communist Country, and we are anti-Communism"; YOU ARE WRONG....

    We obviously aren't anti-communist if we take money from China to prop up our economy/national debt.

    Illegal Immigration is just like Illegal Drugs. If there is a demand to be some where better or a demand for a certain drug, you won't be able to stop it completely. If you really want to fix illegal immigration, stop the demand.

    January 25, 2008 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  5. ash

    Not worth comments!! My experience with preachers has been miserably disastrous!!!!!!!!!!

    January 25, 2008 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  6. mr.fair tax


    January 25, 2008 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  7. David in KC

    The rightwing nutjob Cuban American community in South Florida has steered US policy for far too long. A thoroughly failed approach to Cuba has hurt US business and agriculture markets. It has isolated the US in the region and has achieved nothing for the US or Cuban people.
    It would take courage to flush the ridiculous embargo and to unload the special interests driving this campaign of failure. Current support of rightwing cultish Cubans in South Florida benefits only the GOP. A mighty price America has paid for pandering to this tiny terroristic minority.
    If US markets are open to China, Vietnam, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and other brutal regimes they should be open to socialist Cuba.
    Mike Huckabee: You are officially irrelevent. The fundamentalists don't have a third of the power they did in 2000. thank God.

    January 25, 2008 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  8. Jose Card - Independent

    The Chinese know how to say nice words to our politicians.
    Fidel Castro doesn't so they are stuck with the embargo.
    We are very naive.

    January 26, 2008 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
  9. Duncan, Richmond, VA

    This is why all the candidates are the same except for Ron Paul. All the others will say or promise anything to get elected.

    January 26, 2008 12:17 am at 12:17 am |
  10. Ruth

    I am an American first. Cuban refugees should be subjected to the same laws as any other immigrant comming into this country. Some of these guys will say anything for a vote.

    Cuban americans should vote for Ron Paul. Liberty, freedom, right to personal privacy is the reason why we fled cuba and came here. Non intervention foreign policy will stop the world wide hatred of americans and attacks. Bringing our troups home and the money home will strengthen our country and gain the worlds respect.

    Ron Paul is our only hope for a peaceful and prosperous future.

    I am tired of being embarrased to be an american. I am tired of being the laughing stock of the world. When i travel I am afraid to tell people I am american. I either get laughter, empathy or hatred.

    I am voting for Ron Paul.

    January 26, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  11. David, Oregon City

    Go Huckabee!

    January 26, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  12. Jayson

    As stated by the Constitution all immigration law is to be uniform. To even claim that the current feet dry or feet wet policy is anything remotely uniform is to basically re-write the meaning of the word uniform.

    Alice quite frankly you obviously have a problem if you expect a people to dump their heritage and become part of the collective just because they came here. Fortunately in America we believe that you can still have your heritage and still be American. This country was founded on hard work and dedication not conformity and trying to fit in. If they work to the best of their ability not to become a burden to this country, respect the laws of this country, and try to learn english that is all that truly matters.

    January 26, 2008 01:25 am at 1:25 am |
  13. K. Wilkinson

    What happened to Mikes super tough impenetrable 9 point immigration plan to secure the country?

    January 26, 2008 01:25 am at 1:25 am |
  14. JamieKinstleWapakonetaOH

    Does Gomer Fudd even know where Cuba is?

    January 26, 2008 02:00 am at 2:00 am |
  15. Chuck Norris, TV

    Huck still thinks we went into Iraq because they had WMDs and if we look a little harder we'll find them

    January 26, 2008 06:39 am at 6:39 am |
  16. Independent in IA

    Hucklebum forgets that what's good for the goose is good for the gander.

    This idiot is a total jerk.

    January 26, 2008 06:42 am at 6:42 am |
  17. victor librado

    To: Ash, pls don't sleep while the preacher preaches, YOU WILL MISS THE POINT!!!!

    January 26, 2008 07:00 am at 7:00 am |
  18. Juan, Miami

    "Cuban-Americans … who obviously don't often consider themselves Americans first …"

    Hey Alice Newman in Center Harbor, NH:

    What's obvious is that you've never met a Cuban-American.

    January 26, 2008 07:14 am at 7:14 am |
  19. Tom, Boston MA

    Huckster's integrity as a christian is intact as long as there is no takers no matter what. Otherwise, it's for sale to the highest bidder.

    How does it feel when you walk up and down the proverbial street waiting for a taker?

    January 26, 2008 07:42 am at 7:42 am |
  20. Daniel Wee

    Huckabee is a man of honour.If he wins the GOP & presidential race, it will be because he honour his country and his God.If he loses, he will lose with honour.

    January 26, 2008 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  21. Hudson

    What utter hypocrisy! The Republicans have pandered to Southern rednecks with their constant fearmongering about Mexican immigrants. Why is it acceptable to Huckabee for Cubans to come into our country? Yes. I know there is a separate law for Cubans, but let's ask why. Why is it that we have a trade ban for Cuba, but none for Vietnam or "Red China?" Take away the Cuban vote in Florida and you would see an end to these silly distinctions. What do you expect from a Southern Baptist snake oil salesman who disclaims Evolution?

    January 26, 2008 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  22. Walter Lippmann

    Under the Cuban Adjustment Act, people from Cuba get special rights, special privileges and special advantages which no other immigrant on earth gets: automatic admission into the United States.

    If you're Mexican, you take your chances and cross through the deadly desert of the 2,000-mile border separating your country from the United States. If you're from Haiti, your best hope is that the Coast Guard gets so absorbed in processing other refugees that you can escape before the rifles come out and they start target practicing on your shabby dinghy.

    But, if you're from Cuba and can get your foot on American soil, your citizenship is virtually instantaneous.

    This acts as a powerful "pull factor" encouraging Cubans to try to come to the United States. Imagine if all Mexicans knew they would get to stay knowing they would be granted immediate admission.

    Equal rights for all, not special rights for a politically-connected minority.

    Thank you.

    January 26, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  23. Lorenz, Queens, NY

    Guess Huckabee didn't steal Paul's plan on this one

    January 26, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  24. Carol

    Candidates are now competing to be the best at flip-flopping.

    January 26, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  25. SF, CA

    Hey Mike, you'll say anything to get a vote...

    January 26, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
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