September 28, 2016
A transcript of Secretary Gates’ full discussion can be found here.
COLUMBUS — Former Secretary of Defense Bob Gates and Ohio Governor John Kasich joined the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition along with over 550 Ohio business, faith, and veteran leaders to discuss how America’s engagement abroad spurs economic growth here in Ohio and promotes our national security.
“As a nation, we must embrace the burdens and the benefits of being a global leader. American leadership is needed now more than ever around the world. If we don’t step up, we leave a vacuum and may not like who fills the void. In a time of growing global challenges, our civilian programs – alongside our military – are more critical to support than ever before,” said Secretary Gates.
“We are such a force of good,” said Governor John Kasich. “The world needs us to lead, the world wants us to lead, and we ourselves can never afford to shrink from that.”
Ohio is home to some of the largest global brands and organizations with rapidly growing international operations in emerging markets. Last year, Ohio exported $50.7 billion in goods and services overseas, and trade supported more than one in five local jobs, making U.S. international engagement a strategic economic issue for the state.
“Our world is more interconnected than ever before — and the leaders here in the battleground state of Ohio clearly get that what happens overseas matters for our security, economy, and values,” said USGLC President and CEO Liz Schrayer. “They understand how the small but strategic investment our nation makes in development and diplomacy is vital to keeping us safe and creating opportunity here in Ohio.”
Partners for today’s event included the Cleveland Council on World Affairs, the Columbus Council on World Affairs, the Foreign Policy Leadership Council, Global Cleveland, Greater Columbus Sister Cities International, the Ohio Agribusiness Association, the Ohio Manufacturers’ Association, Ohio State University, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and the Edward B. Brueggeman Center for Dialogue at Xavier University.
Impact 2016 is the USGLC’s nonpartisan initiative to engage and educate all the presidential and congressional candidates on the critical importance of strengthening American global leadership. The initiative, co-chaired by Secretaries Tom Ridge and Madeleine Albright and former Senate Majority Leaders Bill Frist and Tom Daschle, has educated hundreds of candidates continues to hold foreign policy events around the country. Full profiles of candidates are available on the initiative’s web site, impact2016.org.
The U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (www.usglc.org) is a broad-based influential network of 500 businesses and NGOs; national security and foreign policy experts; and business, faith-based, academic, military, and community leaders in all 50 states who support strategic investments to elevate development and diplomacy alongside defense in order to build a better, safer world.