« Marco Rubio on Mitt Romney's VP pick: "He's going to make a great choice" | Main | Florida Senate-race drama exposes GOP jitters »

Trading partners warn of backlash if Rick Scott signs anti-Cuba bill pushed by Miami-Dade lawmakers

Florida’s top two foreign trading partners and the Florida Chamber of Commerce are sounding alarms about a new state law banning governments from hiring companies with business ties to Cuba.

The warnings from economic powerhouses Canada and Brazil pit mighty business interests against the Miami-Dade lawmakers who authored the bill and the majority of legislators who voted for it, placing Florida’s pro-business governor in a political bind.

The frustrated business lobbies have made their concerns known to Gov. Rick Scott, who has until May 5 to sign or veto the legislation, which was formally sent to him Friday. He could also let the measure become law without his signature.

Florida Chamber President Mark Wilson told The Miami Herald he received an unusual phone call from the office of the Canadian ambassador to the United States, which is concerned that the law would affect a slew of Canadian companies that work in both Florida and Cuba.

Wilson said the companies told the Canadian government “that they will not be making any more investments in Florida for fear they might get hit by this.”

Canada is one of Florida’s largest trading partners, second only to Brazil — whose similar complaints about the law have gone all the way to Washington.

Brazilian Minister of Trade and Industry Fernando Pimentel brought up Florida House Bill 959 earlier this month with U.S. Commerce Secretary John Bryson, who told him the administration could not do anything until the state legislation becomes law, according to a Brazilian official.

More here.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Can't take anymore

Perhaps those old line Cuban "refugees" and the political weasels they control can just unilaterally decline to do business with Cuba and leave the rest of us alone. Only in Florida would such madness continue over 50 years after the revolution. Won't even stop when the Castro brothers are worm food. The Irish-Americans never could pull off this kind of crap in Boston or NYC politics to punish the Brits.

Thomas Grimms

Things are changing now in Cuba under Raul Castro, slowly but they are changing. Many of our U.S. companies would like to start trading with Cuba. The Embargo has not worked. It is time to try something different to encourage more change in the direction of democracy and free market economics there. Perhaps we will need to wait until the dying off of the 1960/61 Cuban emigres and the younger generation in the Cuban community is more willing to take a different approach. The old crowd are too embittered and will go to their graves with such feelings. Change has and will come even more to the Big Island. I would like to travel to Cuba as a tourist but I am prohibited by the American government under pressure from the Cuban community down there in Miami area. I don't like my government telling me where I can and cannot go in the world. I also don't like that wet-foot/dry-foot policy which was taylored especially for the Cubans. That's not fair to other groups.

The comments to this entry are closed.