November 7, 2007
Senators Feinstein, Hagel, Durbin, Smith, Dodd and Coleman Send Letter to Appropriations Leadership Urging Preservation of $35.8 Billion in Funding
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, members of the U.S. Global Leadership Campaign (USGLC) applaud the bipartisan leadership of six leading Senators who urged the Senate Appropriations Committee leadership to support the full $35.8 billion in funding for the FY08 International Affairs Budget as Congress finalizes spending levels for FY2008.
“We applaud these six leaders for their extraordinary leadership and commitment to ensure full funding of the International Affairs Budget as approved by the House and Senate,” said George Ingram, President of the USGLC. “This bipartisan coalition of Senate champions truly understands the critical importance of U.S. global engagement to our national security, economic competitiveness, and humanitarian values.”
Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Chuck Hagel (R-NE), Richard Durbin (D-IL), Gordon Smith (R-OR), Christopher Dodd (D-CT) and Norm Coleman (R-MN), are on record urging Appropriations Committee Chairman Robert Byrd (D-WV) and Ranking Member Thad Cochran (R-MS) and Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Ranking Member Judd Gregg (R-NH) to support the full $35.8 billion for the International Affairs Budget approved earlier this fall by a vote of 81-12 in the U.S. Senate. Earlier this May, the same six Senators led a similar effort in which 55 Senators signed on to a bipartisan letter urging the Appropriations Leadership to allocate the Administration’s full request for the FY08 International Affairs Budget.
“The $35.8 billion for the International Affairs Budget is critical to our national security interests, the promotion of the humanitarian values America holds dear and for creating economic prosperity at home and abroad,” Senator Dianne Feinstein said. “The Senate demonstrated this fact by its overwhelming bipartisan vote of 81-12 in support of the U.S. International Affairs Budget.”
“Foreign assistance goes to the core of our efforts to help promote global stability, build alliances and meet the challenges of the 21st Century. Given the significant global challenges we face today, it is in our interests that we adequately fund programs that address the human condition, including despair and poverty, that lead to global instability,” said Senator Chuck Hagel.
Currently, the government is functioning under a continuing resolution set to expire November 16 as the Senate has passed only seven of the 12 spending measures that make up the budget. While the President has not been sent any FY08 spending measures, the White House has promised to veto a majority of the measures over discretionary spending levels. These delays increase the likelihood that Congress will enact a comprehensive year-end omnibus appropriations bill containing most of the spending measures.
About the U.S. Global Leadership Campaign
The U.S. Global Leadership Campaign (USGLC) is a broad-based, nationwide coalition of businesses, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and community leaders that advocates for a strong U.S. International Affairs Budget. Members of the USGLC – a vibrant, influential network of 400 organizations and thousands of individuals – engage policymakers in the nation’s capital and educate the public around the country to build support for these essential programs.
The International Affairs Budget provides America with the fundamental tools to meet the global challenges of the 21st century and is critical to protecting our national security, building economic prosperity, and strengthening humanitarian values. For more information, visit www.usglc.org.