cuba

Updated at 1:08 p.m. ET

Miguel Mario Díaz-Canel Bermúdez has been elected president of Cuba, officially ending the Castro family's decades of domination of the country's highest office. The Communist Party formally announced the presidency's transition from Raúl Castro on Thursday, in what might better be described as a coronation than an election.

Cuba stands hours from a watershed: On Thursday, for the first time since the Cuban revolution nearly six decades ago, the island nation will hail a leader outside the Castro family.

President Raul Castro, 86-year-old brother of the late Fidel, expects to hand power over the Communist government to his handpicked successor — and with one day to go before that historic exchange, the identity of the man likely to receive that baton has come into focus: Miguel Mario Díaz-Canel Bermúdez.

Engage Cuba via Facebook

A new, bipartisan Kentucky council aiming to strengthen ties between the U.S. and Cuba has high hopes for trade.

via COMER.HOUSE.GOV, CROPPED

U.S. Congressman James Comer says he is "disappointed" in President Donald Trump's new restrictions on travel and trade with Cuba. But, he said he is encouraged to see American agriculture as a priority for future U.S-Cuba engagement. 

Updated at 8:19 p.m. ET

President Trump is preparing to announce changes in U.S. policy toward Cuba, possibly tightening restrictions on travel and trade that were loosened under former President Barack Obama.

Trump is expected to announce the changes in Miami on Friday.

The move was confirmed by a congressional source with direct knowledge of the situation.

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., has been leading the push for a more restrictive policy, along with his fellow Cuban-American, Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla.

Courtesy Rep. James Comer's Office

Republican Kentucky Congressman James Comer (1st Dist.) recently returned from a five-member congressional agricultural trade mission to Cuba. Comer said lifting the Cuban embargo on trade is a "no brainer" and plans on being a leader in Congressional efforts to do so. Matt Markgraf speaks with Comer about how the U.S. and Kentucky's first district could stand to gain from easing restrictions and expanding trade relations with the Caribbean island.

A director of a Kentucky study abroad program is interested in seizing on the educational aspects of Cuba as potential changes develop following the death Fidel Castro on Friday and the first regularly-scheduled commercial flight from Miami to Havana this week.

Updated at 2:39 p.m. ET

President Obama announced today the most significant change in U.S. policy toward Cuba in more than 50 years, paving the way for the normalization of relations and the opening of a U.S. Embassy in Havana.

Obama said "we will end an outdated approach that for decades has failed to advance our interests and instead we will begin to normalize relations between our two countries."

Immigration Reform Could Help Kentucky Economy

Jul 4, 2014
kypolicy.org

The study, “New Americans in Kentucky,” was published this week by the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy. It found that immigrants make up 3 percent of the state’s population, with one-in-five immigrants to Kentucky originating from Mexico. Kentucky’s immigrant population grew faster than all but six states from 2000 to 2012.