JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Republican presidential hopefuls are casting President Barack Obama as a failure on Cuba and say they would do a better job ushering freedom into the nation after Castro.

Newt Gingrich said during Thursday night’s debate that the United States should use the same tactics President Ronald Reagan employed to bring down the Soviet Union. Gingrich says the U.S. policy should be to connect with young Cubans to persuade them that they want freedom for their generation.

Mitt Romney says he would use economic pressure to bring about freedom for the island nation 90 miles off Florida. Rick Santorum says Obama’s policies to ease restrictions on Cuba are “the exact wrong message at the exact wrong time.”

Ron Paul alone says the United States should engage Cuba now to ease tensions.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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