The United States Treasury Department says Jay Z and Beyonce's trip to Cuba fell under the educational guidelines.

Rapper and entertainment industry mogul Jay-Z responded Thursday with a forceful rejection of the criticism he’s received from South Florida politicians over his visit to Cuba last week with his wife Beyoncé.

And the couple received support from a Broward County Commissioner.

In a new music track, “Open Letter” filled with words that can’t be printed here, Jay-Z raps about the trip to Cuba. “I’m in Cuba, I love Cubans. This communist talk is so confusing,” Jay-Z raps. The music is online; it was transcribed by the political news site Politico.

“I done turned Havana into Atlanta,” he raps. “Boy from the hood, I got White House clearance… Politicians never did s--- for me except lie to me, distort history… They wanna give me jail time and a fine. Fine, let me commit a real crime….

 “Hear the freedom in my speech… Obama said, ‘Chill you gonna get me impeached. You don’t need this s--- anyway, chill with me on the beach.’ ”

You can listen to Jay-Z's new track here.


The line “Boy from the hood, I got White House clearance” suggested President Barack Obama was OK with the trip, something Press Secretary Jay Carney disputed in his daily briefing Thursday

Here’s the back and forth:

Q    Thanks, Jay.  Returning to Beyoncé and Jay-Z -- Jay-Z released a rap today.  I know the other day you said that Treasury was the one that cleared their trip.  He suggested that he got White House clearance and that he personally spoke with the President.  I’ll just quote:  “I turned Havana into Atlanta/ Boy from the hood got White House clearance/ Obama said, ‘Chill, you gonna get me impeached’/ You don’t need this [expletive] anyway/ Chill with me on the beach.” (Laughter.) 

 MR. CARNEY:  I guess nothing rhymes with Treasury.  (Laughter.)  Because Treasury offers and gives licenses for travel, as you know, and the White House has nothing to do with it. 

Q    So are you saying that he did not -- the President did not have a conversation with Jay-Z?

MR. CARNEY:  I am absolutely saying that the White House, from the President on down, had nothing to do with anybody’s personal -- anybody’s travel to Cuba.  That is something that Treasury handles.

Q    You can’t rhyme that?  (Laughter.)

MR. CARNEY:  OFAC, Treasury -- these are tough words to rhyme. 

Q    Did he communicate with --

MR. CARNEY:  It’s a song, Donovan.  The President did not communicate with Jay-Z over this trip.

The controversy involves Beyoncé Knowles-Carter — who sang at Obama’s inauguration and the Super Bowl this year and was named most beautiful woman in the world last year by People magazine — and Shawn Carter, her rap mogul husband who goes by the stage name Jay-Z.

They traveled to the island nation to celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary. Big crowds greeted them in the Cuban capital as they strolled hand in hand through the city and posed for pictures — even though the long-standing U.S. trade embargo against Cuba prevents most Americans from traveling to the island without a license granted by the U.S. government. The Obama administration allows “people to people” travel to Cuba for academic, religious or cultural programs.