August 12, 2020

Sen. Tom Udall to Local Leaders: Global Health, Foreign Assistance Critical to Fighting Pandemic, Protecting Americans

Watch the full event here:

WASHINGTON, D.C. / SANTA FE – Today, Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) joined New Mexico political, business, and community leaders in a virtual town hall to discuss the importance of American global health, diplomacy, and development programs to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and protect the health and safety of all Americans—in New Mexico and across the country.

“The COVID-19 crisis has been truly devastating for communities across New Mexico and the United States. And this global pandemic has underscored the importance of international engagement and U.S leadership abroad, because what happens around the world affects us here at home. As Congress deliberates next steps, we shouldn’t lose focus on our international and diplomatic response. Instead of hunkering down and suffering the impacts alone, the U.S. should lead when it comes to global public health – to prevent the destruction of the next pandemic,” Senator Udall said. “It’s essential that we pursue a foreign policy that puts U.S. diplomatic leadership first, instead of alienating our allies and embroiling ourselves in endless wars. As a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, I’m fighting to restore the United States’ peaceful leadership role in the international community, and invest the diplomatic resources needed for the U.S. and world to recover from this pandemic and stop the next one.”

The U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC) hosted today’s online event at a time when policy makers are considering our country’s response to the pandemic at home and abroad, including resources for the State Department, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC).

“COVID-19 is jeopardizing more than global health, it’s also creating national security challenges. Rising food shortages, job loss, and poverty levels are opening opportunities for extremist groups to take hold— which could have negative implications for our own security, as well as the stability of entire regions,” said Lt. Gen. Norm Seip, USAF (ret.). “A United States-led response would go a long way in addressing these underlying factors and help ease the effects of COVID-19 worldwide.”

U.S. international engagement is crucial to deal with the pandemic, from a global health perspective as well as an economic one—an especially important matter in New Mexico, where over 211,900 jobs in the state are tied to international trade and exports to foreign markets total more than $3.7 billion a year.

“Since the outbreak of COVID-19, Senator Udall has been hard at work to confront the challenges this pandemic has placed on our health, our economy, and our security,” said Carey Campbell, USGLC National Outreach Director. “He gets that in an interconnected world such as ours, America needs to be engaged globally— through our global health and international programs— if we want to stop COVID-19 worldwide and protect our communities in New Mexico and across the country.”

Many of today’s participants are members of the USGLC’s New Mexico Advisory Committee, a strong and growing coalition that brings together more than 60 business, faith, non-profit, veteran, and political leaders who understand why American global leadership matters for New Mexico.

The U.S. Global Leadership Coalition ( 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.