MINNEAPOLIS – U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) announced that her office has helped reunite Minnesota Twins legend Tony Oliva with his younger brother, Juan Carlos Oliva, in time for Tony’s induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame on July 24. Klobuchar’s office successfully secured a visa for Juan Carlos Oliva to travel from Cuba and join his brother in Minnesota tomorrow, Monday July 11.
“I want to celebrate Tony’s incredible career, where he’s come from and where he has brought us: American League Rookie of the Year in 1964, three batting titles…a spot of course in the Minnesota Twins Hall of Fame, a statue at Target Field and playing in the 1965 World Series. All of these things are amazing but I think what will be a moment that I know Tony will never forget is being there with his whole family, including his cherished brother, when he gets inducted into the Hall of Fame,” said Klobuchar.
Klobuchar was joined at the press conference by Tony Oliva, his wife Gordette, his daughter Anita, and two Minnesota Twins executives who played a key role in helping facilitate Juan Carlos’ arrival – Joe Pohald, Executive Vice President for Brand Strategy and Growth, and Amanda Daley, Senior Manager for International Administration and Education.
Klobuchar has long worked to reform America’s relationship with Cuba. In May 2021, she introduced bipartisan legislation with Senators Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) to eliminate the legal barriers to Americans doing business in Cuba, boosting Cuban exports and allowing Cubans greater access to American goods. This legislation does not repeal portions of the law that address human rights or property claims against the Cuban government.
Cuba relies on agricultural imports to feed the 11 million people who live there and the approximately 4 million tourists who visited in 2019 prior to the pandemic. The U.S. International Trade Commission found that if restrictions on trade with Cuba had been lifted, exports like wheat, rice, corn, and soybeans could increase by 166 percent within five years to a total of about $800 million.