BEVERLY (CBS) — Speaking to a group of residents inside Beverly High School Congressman Seth Moulton says he’s thrilled to be joining President Obama on Sunday in his historic trip to Cuba.
Moulton, who will also be joined on the trip by fellow Congressman Jim McGovern, says he got the call on Friday.
“I’m honored to be a part (of this), and it’s part of an important change,” he said.
This will be the first time in 88 years that a sitting president visits Cuba. After a half-century of cold war opposition, the Obama administration says this is an important step in a long process to normalize relations with Cuba.
“The embargo was well intentioned. The Cuban people live under an oppressive communist regime, but it hasn’t worked and Castros are still in power after 50 years and it’s time for a change. That’s what this trip is all about,” Moulton says.
As a member of the Armed Services Committee, Moulton says he’s been a strong advocate for diplomatic relations and political engagement when it comes to international issues.
“You can’t win all of our foreign policy battles by sending troops or erecting walls,” he said.
Moulton says he’s signing a letter to ask the federal government to approve a flight from Massachusetts to Havana.
The congressman says the three-day trip will include taking part in a state dinner and spending time with Cuban people in Havana.
“President Obama’s end goal is to bring freedom and democracy to the Cuban people. That’s what we should all want,” Moulton said.