a more safe, secure, and democratic region
Senator Rubio recognizes that events in our Hemisphere affect not only Floridians, but also our nation as a whole. During his tenure in the U.S. Senate, Rubio has passed multiple laws in support of a more safe, secure, and democratic region and has been influential in key foreign policy decisions. Rubio, as Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations’ Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere Transnational Crime, Civilian Security, Democracy, Human Rights, and Global Women’s Issues, is a respected voice for U.S. foreign policy and is committed to promoting American values and principles abroad.
Western Hemisphere Security Strategic Act
Through the introduction of his bipartisan Western Hemisphere Security Strategic Act, Rubio seeks to enhance U.S. engagement in our region at a time when authoritarian regimes, and transnational criminal organizations pose a direct threat to our national security and regional stability.
Cuban Military Transparency Act
Working closely with the Trump Administration, Rubio was a key policy architect in reversing President Obama’s appeasement of the oppressive and tyrannical regime in Cuba. Rubio’s Cuban Military Transparency Act of 2015 was the basis for key presidential executive actions to prevent financial transactions that compensate the Cuban military, and associated entities, such as the regime’s Armed Forces Business Enterprises Group (GAESA).
In the constant fight to hold accountable the murderous Maduro narco-regime in Venezuela, since 2014 Rubio has led the cause for imposing targeted sanctions on the regime and its enablers, even when it meant going against Obama-era State Department bureaucrats.
As highlighted by the Miami Herald, “Rubio’s efforts to increase international pressure on Nicolás Maduro’s regime, and to push the Trump Administration to take a tough stance on Venezuela, have paid off big.” What the media dubbed “The Rubio Doctrine” was vital in advancing U.S. policy toward Venezuela.
Rubio co-authored the Venezuela Emergency Relief, Democracy Assistance, and Development (VERDAD) Act, which to date is the most comprehensive effort to address the crisis in Venezuela. The bipartisan bill provided $400 million in humanitarian aid to support Venezuelan refugees fleeing their homeland from the Maduro regime’s man-made crisis, and codified crucial sanctions against members of the dictatorship. Rubio is also the co-lead of the Preserving Accountability for National Assets (PANA) Act of 2021 and the Banning Operations and Leases with the Illegitimate Venezuelan Authoritarian Regime (BOLIVAR) Act, which further strengthen protections against the Maduro regime. Moreover, Rubio led the introduction of the Preempting Misguided Appeasement and Financing of Destabilizing Regimes Act to ensure the Biden Administration does not import Iranian and Venezuelan crude oil, petroleum, petroleum products, or liquefied natural gas into the United States.
As a champion of the bipartisan Reinforcing Nicaragua’s Adherence to Conditions for Electoral Reform (RENACER) Act and the Nicaraguan Investment and Conditionality Act (NICA), Rubio joined colleagues and fought for the U.S. to impose targeted sanctions against the Ortega-Murillo authoritarian dynasty and corrupt Nicaraguan officials responsible for human rights abuses and corruption.
By supporting initiatives that advance prosperity, security, and international development, Rubio has advocated for transparent institutions that uphold the rule of law, defend human rights, and promote regional stability. As a strong advocate against human trafficking, transnational organized crime, and narco-trafficking, Rubio is committed to combating threats in our hemisphere that impact Floridians and American families.
Rubio’s Central American Women and Children Protection Act is a comprehensive and bipartisan bill that seeks to strengthen judicial systems in the Northern Triangle to decrease and deter violence against women and children and expand safe access of female and child survivors of violence to adequate, appropriate, and coordinated support services.
In 2020, Senator Rubio led the reauthorization of the Extension of the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act, which extended duty-free access to certain textile goods from 23 Caribbean countries made with U.S. yarns, fabrics, and threads until 2030. Trade is a key component of the region’s developing economy. By passing this bill, Congress promoted U.S. exports and strengthened our bilateral relations with allies and partners in the Caribbean.
As a member of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Rubio has secured key funding to promote security assistance in Colombia, developmental assistance in Haiti, democracy programs in support of civil society in Cuba and Nicaragua, U.S. Strategy for Engagement in Central America, and development assistance throughout the Western Hemisphere.