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“Today, May 20th, marks Cuban Independence Day, the day that Cuba successfully gained its independence from Spain over a century ago in 1902. 

“This should be a happy occasion. Sadly, today is a somber reminder that Cuba is not a free country. Its brave people suffer under a ruthless, communist regime that strips them of their rights, their self-determination, and their future.

“On this anniversary, we reaffirm our commitment to standing with the people of Cuba and all those who fight for freedom and democracy across the world.

“At a time when the new socialist Democrats say that socialism is the answer, today reminds us that socialism is incompatible with the true meaning of freedom.

“Freedom means protecting ourselves, our families, and our community, not subjugating them to the state.

“Freedom means practicing free speech and self-determination, not suppressing them with violence.

“And freedom certainly means pursuing happiness, not stifling it.

“Americans are blessed to enjoy these freedoms in our nation, but sadly, Cubans cannot in theirs. That’s because socialism never practices what it preaches.

“That is why I am alarmed when Democrats use socialist rhetoric and push socialist policies.

“Democrats want to control what we can read, what we can teach our children, and deny our history.

“Democrats want to censor free speech and restrict debate through political correctness. And Democrats want to redistribute taxpayers’ hard-earned money from those who work to those who choose not to.

“That, my friends, is the road to serfdom. The fact is, socialist policies have never worked. They do not work. They will never work. And as long as we have those who are willing to defend her – and the Republican Party always will – America will never be a socialist country.

“I stand before you, proud to take part in recognizing Cuban Independence Day and in solidarity for a free and democratic Cuba.

“I feel especially honored to be joined by these Members of Congress, to celebrate freedom and denounce socialism. They and their families directly understand the meaning behind President Ronald Reagan’s famous words: “Freedom is never more than one generation from extinction.”

“They, and their families, know this struggle because they are all Cuban-Americans who, in one way or another, have borne witness to the brutality of communism.”