"Since the early 1960s, U.S. policy toward Cuba under Fidel Castro has consisted largely of isolating the communist nation through economic sanctions, which the Bush Administration has tightened significantly. A second policy component has consisted of support measures for the Cuban people, including private humanitarian donations and U.S.-sponsored radio and television broadcasting to Cuba. As in past years, the main issue for U.S. policy toward Cuba in the 110th Congress is how to best support political and economic change in one of the world's remaining communist nations. Unlike past years, however, Congress is now examining policy toward Cuba in the context of Fidel Castro's temporary, and potentially permanent, departure from the political scene because of health conditions. […] Several initiatives would tighten sanctions: H.R. 525 (related to U.S. fugitives in Cuba), and H.R. 1679/S. 876 (related to Cuba's offshore oil development). Two initiatives, H.R. 1306 and S. 749, would amend a provision of law restricting the registration or enforcement of certain Cuban trademarks; H.R. 217, H.R. 624, H.R. 2819, and S. 1673 would repeal the trademark sanction. The House-passed version of the FY2008 foreign aid appropriations measure, H.R. 2764, would fully fund the Administration's request for $45.7 million for Cuba democracy programs, while the Senate Appropriations Committee report to the bill recommends $15 million. The House version would prohibit funding for counter-narcotics cooperation with Cuba, while the Senate version would provide $1 million. This report will be updated regularly. Also see CRS [Congressional Research Service] Report RL31139, 'Cuba: U.S. Restrictions on Travel and Remittances'; CRS Report RS20468, 'Cuban Migration Policy and Issues'; and CRS Report RL33622, 'Cuba's Future Political Scenarios and U.S. Policy Approaches.'"
CRS Report for Congress, RL33819