Last week, Gov. Ron DeSantis and Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nuñez joined U.S. Reps. Maria Elvira Salazar, R-Fla., and Carlos Gimenez, R-Fla., and FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr to urge the Biden administration to provide internet access to Cuba.
They held a press conference following a letter that DeSantis sent to Biden requesting federal assistance to provide internet access to the people of Cuba who are standing up against communist oppression.
“We are seeing on the island of Cuba people fighting against a communist dictatorship,” said DeSantis. “A free Cuba is a noble cause. It is a cause that many people have dedicated their lives to. We have to stand with the people of Cuba against the communist dictatorship, and one of the most effective things we can do as a country is getting internet back on the island, but we need the Biden administration to step up to make this happen.
“The one thing that communist regimes fear the most is the truth, and if we are able to help Cubans communicate with one another and with the outside world, that truth is going to matter. That truth will be decisive. Mr. President, now is the time to stand up and be counted with the people of Cuba who are seeking an end to a brutal 62 year reign of communist oppression,” he added.
“More than 60 years ago, my father fled Cuba and came to the United States seeking freedom and a better life for his family,” said Nuñez. “Like so many Cuban immigrant families, he put his roots down in South Florida, but would often speak of the plight of those who had suffered under the communist, tyrannical regime. Sadly, nothing has changed over the course of six decades and, in fact, has only gotten worse. Today, the people of Cuba need our support more than ever. I speak for all Cuban Americans when I say we have no stronger advocate and no stronger supporter than Governor DeSantis. He is doing everything he can to support the Cuban people, but we need the president to step up and help the Cuban people using the resources that the federal government has to offer.”
DeSantis wrote Biden on the matter on Wednesday. The letter is below.
Dear Mr. President:
I write to urge you to assist in providing Internet access to the people of Cuba standing up against communist oppression and demanding a voice after decades of suffering under the yoke of a cruel dictatorship.
As you know, the Cuban people are taking to the streets to protest the Communist regime, and the Cuban government has responded with violence. At first, the world could see the images and videos of this mass movement, but now the tyrannical regime of President Miguel Díaz-Canel has shut off access to the Internet. The Cuban people have lost their ability to communicate with one another, and many Floridians born in Cuba have no information on the safety of their loved ones. Equally as important, the world has also lost the ability to see what is happening on the ground as the Cuban people rise in support of freedom.
Technology exists to provide Internet access into Cuba remotely, using the innovation of American enterprise and the diverse industries here. Similar to the American efforts to broadcast radio into the Soviet Union during the Cold War in Europe, the federal government has a history of supporting the dissemination of information into Cuba for the Cuban people through Radio & Televisión Martí, located in Miami. In addition to sending information, however, our efforts must include creating a means for the Cuban people to speak to the world.
I urge you to act immediately to provide all necessary authorizations, indemnifications, and funding to American businesses with the capability to provide Internet access for the people of Cuba. Steps must be taken immediately.
Internet access for the Cuban people is of critical importance as they stand up against the repressive Communist government. In the hands of these brave individuals, such access may be the key to finally bringing democracy to the island.