September 9, 2011
Congress Should Enact No Less than Senate Funding Level to Ensure America’s Global Leadership
Washington, DC — Given the difficult fiscal climate, the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC) is pleased with the Senate Appropriations Committee’s Fiscal Year 2012 allocation for the International Affairs Budget, which provides critical funding for programs to protect America’s national security and promote economic prosperity.
The USGLC calls on Congress to heed the calls of top business leaders and national security experts on the importance of the International Affairs Budget and to enact no less than the Senate’s funding level of $44.6 billion for non-war related programs. The House’s FY12 level of $39.6 billion represents a devastating 20 percent cut to non-war related programs from FY10 levels, which puts America’s leadership in the world at risk.
“As we approach the 10th anniversary of the attacks of September the 11th, the security of this nation should be foremost on all of our minds,” said former Secretary of Defense Frank Carlucci in an op-ed in Politico this week. “Our top military leaders have all made clear that a smart investment in U.S. global leadership keeps our country safe and saves money in the long run. I urge House and Senate negotiators to protect our national security with a strong and effective International Affairs Budget.”
“As a result of the dramatic reductions to the International Affairs Budget in FY11 and those proposed by the House for FY12, many of the hard-fought gains we have worked to achieve since 9/11 may be reversed,” said Admiral James Loy and General Michael Hagee, co-chairs of the USGLC National Security Advisory Council, in a letter today to Congressional leaders.
“There is a long, bipartisan tradition of supporting America’s International Affairs Budget, demonstrating how critical this funding is to our national and economic security,” former Secretary of Agriculture and USGLC Chairman Dan Glickman added. “Right now a famine is unfolding before our eyes in the Horn of Africa, which could destabilize that entire part of the world. But through innovative, effective programs funded by the International Affairs Budget, we can alleviate the suffering, work to prevent the next famine, and help bring stability to the region.”
In June, over 50 of the country’s top business leaders released a letter to Members of Congress urging them to support a strong and effective International Affairs Budget, making it clear U.S. investments in global engagement open new markets to American businesses, creating jobs and economic growth across the country. “The International Affairs Budget funds valuable tools for advancing U.S. economic and strategic interests around the world and is vital for achieving a more prosperous future for American workers and businesses,” reads the letter.
The International Affairs Budget represents just over one percent of the entire federal budget yet pays large dividends for our national and economic security, as well as American leadership and values in the world. The International Affairs Budget promotes a better, safer America and world by protecting national security, building economic prosperity and strengthening humanitarian values.
The U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (www.usglc.org) is a broad-based influential network of 400 businesses and NGOs; national security and foreign policy experts; and business, faith-based, academic and community leaders in all 50 states who support a smart power approach of elevating development and diplomacy alongside defense in order to build a better, safer world.