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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Gov. Scott says Trump and Cuba issue is a 'distraction'; Rubio says it's 'troubling'



Gov. Rick Scott said he hasn't read the Newsweek story alleging that Donald Trump broke the U.S. trade embargo with Cuba by hiring a consulting firm in late 1998, but he did have an opinion on it: It's a distraction fueled rival Hillary Clinton.
"I haven't seen the article. I've not talked to Trump about it. I assume this is more of what Hillary Clinton keeps doing,'' Scott told reporters in Orlando Thursday.
"She doesn't want to talk about job creation because she didn't get it done. She doesn't want to talk about ISIS because she failed. She doesn't want to support law enforcement or the military, which she's failed at. This is another Clinton distraction because the election is going to be about jobs. It's going to be about -- Donald knows how to create jobs. He's done it. Clinton never has."

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida's most prominent Cuban-American lawmaker, called the Newsweek report “troubling.”

“The article makes some very serious and troubling allegations,” he said in a campaign statement. “I will reserve judgment until we know all the facts and Donald has been given the opportunity to respond.”

Newsweek reported that Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts paid at least $68,000 to a consulting firm in an attempt to give Trump’s business a head start in Cuba if the U.S. loosened or lifted trade sanctions, according to the front-page Newsweek report, titled “The Castro Connection.” Read more here. 
The consulting firm, Seven Arrows Investment and Development Corp., later instructed the casino company on how to make it look like legal spending for charity.

The following year, Trump flirted with a Reform Party presidential run, giving a November 1999 speech to the Cuban American National Foundation in Miami where he cast himself as a pro-embargo hardliner who refused to do potentially lucrative business on the communist island until Fidel Castro was gone.

[Last modified: Thursday, September 29, 2016 1:06pm]


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