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Trump quietly extends Cuba ‘trading with the enemy’ embargo — just as Irma pummels island

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President Donald Trump speaking at a press conference (image via screengrab).

In a late Friday news dump, President Donald Trump issued a memorandum announcing the extension of the trade embargo against Cuba for another year just as Hurricane Irma was headed to pummel the island nation.

The White House issued the presidential memorandum Friday, under the Trading with the Enemy Act on Cuba, extending it until  September 14, 2018.

The memorandum, directed at the Secretary of State and Secretary of Treasury, can be read below:

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Under section 101(b) of Public Law 95-223 (91 Stat. 1625; 50 U.S.C. 4305 note), and a previous determination on September 13, 2016 (81 FR 64047, September 16, 2016), the exercise of certain authorities under the Trading With the Enemy Act is scheduled to expire on September 14, 2017.

I hereby determine that the continuation of the exercise of those authorities with respect to Cuba for 1 year is in the national interest of the United States.

Therefore, consistent with the authority vested in me by section 101(b) of Public Law 95-223, I continue for 1 year, until September 14, 2018, the exercise of those authorities with respect to Cuba, as implemented by the Cuban Assets Control Regulations, 31 C.F.R. Part 515.

The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized and directed to publish this determination in the Federal Register.

According to CBS, Cuba was expected to be slammed by Hurricane Irma — which has fluctuated between Category Four and Category Five — with the capital of Havana and the neighboring western provinces of Mayabeque and Pinar del Rio taking the brunt of the high winds, rain, and tides.


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Election gift for Florida? Trump poised to approve drug imports from Canada

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Over the objections of drugmakers, the Trump administration is expected within weeks to finalize its plan that would allow states to import some prescription medicines from Canada.

Six states — Colorado, Florida, Maine, New Hampshire, New Mexico and Vermont — have passed laws allowing them to seek federal approval to buy drugs from Canada to give their residents access to lower-cost medicines.

But industry observers say the drug importation proposal under review by the administration is squarely aimed at Florida — the most populous swing state in the November election. Trump's support of the idea initially came at the urging of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a close Republican ally.

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