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Sen. Leahy: Time For U.S. And Cuba To Discuss Relationship

PATRICK LEAHY: You know, ever since the 1960s, we found one stumbling block or one impediment after another.

I think it's time that we start sitting down and talking about relationships between our two countries, relationships that reflect the realities of today, not the past history, sometimes the imagined history, of the '60s and the '70s. I think if we do that and look at a whole host of things, I think Mr. Gross is better off.

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LEAHY: I mean, Cuba doesn't expect to change our form of government. We don't expect to change theirs. But I think that it's an anomaly that we have the kind of relationships or lack of relationships between our two countries. For example, the United States will allow Cuban-Americans to go to Cuba to visit. They won't allow Irish-Americans or Italian-Americans, except by very special circumstances.

You know, it makes -- it certainly makes no sense to that region or to the rest of the world. I think, if I were to say anything, it would be that both countries have got to be willing to sit down and quietly work out, knowing we're not going to change each other's basic philosophies, but we can change a great deal in the behavior of both countries.

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