Photo: Rhona Wise/AFP via Getty Images
In 1996, Joe Biden supported tightening the already devastating U.S. embargo on Cuba through the Helms-Burton Act, which was signed into law by President Bill Clinton, though he missed the vote. In addition to tightening economic sanctions against Cuba, it increased support for Cuban exile groups and made it official U.S. policy to support regime change in Cuba. In 2008, Biden stated that he was against “lifting the embargo until there is a response to political prisoners — all the things that are wrong with this Castro administration.” Later, as vice president, Biden backed away from his long-standing support for aggressive U.S.-Cuba policy and supported President Barack Obama’s efforts to normalize diplomatic relations with Cuba. When he ran for president in 2020, Biden said he supported ending trade and travel sanctions against Cuba and vowed to reverse President Donald Trump’s reversal of Obama-era efforts to normalize relations.