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GOP Debate In Miami: Cuba, Sea-Level Rise and Foreign Worker Visas

Pedro Portal
Miami Herald
Republican presidential candidates Marco Rubio, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and John Kasich stand up for the national anthem during the Republican presidential primary debate Thursday night at the University of Miami.

The Republican presidential candidates gathered at the University of Miami for its last debate before the Florida primary on Tuesday.


America’s changing relationship with Cuba was part of the discussion at last night’s Republican primary debate.

Donald Trump said he doesn’t agree entirely with President Barack Obama’s diplomatic openings with Cuba, but something needs to change.

“After 50 years, it’s enough time, folks," said Trump. But we have to make a good deal.”

Trump didn’t outline what a good deal might look like, but Marco Rubio offered his ideas.

“Here’s a good deal," said Rubio. "Cuba has free elections, Cuba stops putting people in jail for speaking out, Cuba has freedom of the press.”

John Kasich said he wouldn’t do business with Cuba and Ted Cruz said he’d reverse the Obama administration’s approach to Cuba.


Florida Senator Marco Rubio took shots at Disney for its use of foreign worker visas, or H-1B visas.

Disney is being sued by former workers for allegedly replacing them with cheaper immigrant labor.

Marco Rubio called it illegal.

“If there’s an American working at Disney, and they bring an H-1B visa to replace their direct job, that is a violation of the law,” said Rubio.

Donald Trump said that his own business shouldn’t have been allowed the use of the H-1B program the way it has.

“I’m a businessman and I have to do what I have to do, but it’s sitting there for you to use,” said Trump. “But it’s very bad.”


CNN moderator Jake Tapper conveyed a message from Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado to the GOP candidates.

The mayor wanted to know if the candidates acknowledge the “scientific consensus” on climate change – and how they’ll confront sea-level rise and flooding in cities like Miami.

Tapper put the question to Florida Senator Marco Rubio, whom Regalado endorses.

Rubio argued the climate has always been changing – and suggested it’s not a man-made problem.

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