Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) issued the following statement today regarding last night’s passage of an Organization of American States (OAS) resolution regarding the Venezuela crisis:
“First, I want to commend the governments of Canada and Panama for standing with the U.S. and the Inter-American Democratic Charter against this sham of an OAS resolution on Venezuela.
“This resolution essentially takes the side of Nicolás Maduro and his government, fails to account for the complicity and responsibility of this government in violent, state-sanctioned acts against peaceful demonstrators, and fails to call for genuine dialogue to effectively address the Venezuelan people’s legitimate demands. In short, it simply is not worth the paper it will be printed on.
“This places a dark stain on OAS Secretary General Insulza’s tenure and on the overall retreat from defending human rights and democracy that have marked the OAS’ recent years.
“President Obama and his administration also bear a significant share of the responsibility here. This is an indictment of the Obama Administration’s ‘leading from behind’ approach to Latin America that has neglected the region to the point of making the U.S. mere bystanders, as authoritarians destroy decades of hard fought democratic gains.
“This should also be a wake up call for people throughout Latin America and freedom fighters in the hemisphere to redouble our efforts to stand with the people of Venezuela. We must actively push back against creeping authoritarianism and stand strongly in defense of individual freedoms and democratically functioning institutions elsewhere in the hemisphere.
“Given the Obama Administration’s unwillingness to do any of this when it comes to Venezuela and throughout our hemisphere, it falls on Congress to lead. I look forward to our next opportunity on Tuesday when the Senate Foreign Relations Committee takes up a resolution on Venezuela. By having Congress lead, hopefully then, President Obama and the administration will follow.”