United States foreign policy needs to be built upon carefully balancing all our national security tools – defense, diplomacy, and development. While a measured military power is a component of this strategy, the tools of diplomacy and development must be more greatly valued and utilized. The U.S. has a long history of leading the world in providing foreign assistance to impoverished and developing countries, supporting poverty reduction, economic development, and social progress. We also have a proud track record of providing urgent humanitarian relief during times of disaster, conflict, or disease outbreaks. I have long been a strong advocate for robust and effective foreign assistance.

As the lead Democrat for the House Armed Services Committee, I have unique insights into today’s national security issues and have pushed Congress and the U.S. government to pursue a holistic foreign policy approach. I recognize the importance of poverty reduction, access to education, combatting climate change, good governance, and diplomatic engagement to enable our pursuit of stable international partners. 

Congressional Caucus on Effective Foreign Assistance: As co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on Effective Foreign Assistance, I have called attention to the importance of foreign assistance programs that build resilient communities, enhance stability, and promote poverty reduction and the positive impact these programs have on our own national security. 

Strengthening Global Health: The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the importance of investments in global health and the important role that the U.S. can play in strengthening health care systems. I have aggressively pursued strong funding for programs to support under resourced communities, including the International Family Planning, Maternal & Child Health, the Global Vaccine Initiative (GAVI), the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, the United Nations Population Fund, and global health security programs.

Combatting Climate Change on the International Stage: The U.S. must be a leader in working with other countries to address the climate crisis, which is already having a destabilizing impact in countries around the world. U.S. diplomatic engagement is critical to pushing other countries to increase their climate commitments. In addition, U.S. government financing and other assistance is crucial to spurring projects around the world aimed at promoting clean energy and addressing climate change. We need to drastically increase our investments in these programs. 

Increasing Funding for the Millennium Challenge Corporation: I am a strong proponent of initiatives such as the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) that work cooperatively with countries to reduce poverty and promote good governance. I lead an annual letter to the House Appropriations Committee seeking increased funding for MCC.

Supporting Refugees: Welcoming refugees to the U.S. and supporting the refugee resettlement system globally is a core component of U.S. international affairs. I support increasing the number of refugees who are resettled in the U.S. and have pushed for additional funding for these programs.

As the U.S. and world face growing threats to economic, political, and security stability, it’s critical that we build the strongest possible alliances and partnerships wherever we can to help us achieve our goals. The U.S. cannot tackle these problems on our own. Our alliances and partnerships give us a unique advantage to tackle these complex challenges.  

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