April 1, 2009
Senate’s Bipartisan Support for President’s Request Critical to National Security, Economic Prosperity
Washington, DC – The U.S. Global Leadership Campaign today released the following statement from Executive Director Liz Schrayer on the Senate’s unanimous passage of the Kerry-Lugar amendment to restore $4 billion in FY2010 International Affairs funding that was cut by the Senate Budget Committee from President Obama’s request:
“The U.S. Global Leadership Campaign and our more than 400 member organizations around the country applaud the Senate for voting to fully fund President Obama’s International Affairs Budget request of $53.8 billion. With the President at the G-20 summit in London and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton concluding meetings in The Hague on increasing international assistance to Afghanistan, the Senate’s action to restore the $4 billion cut by the Senate Budget Committee sends the right message to the world that in this time of crisis, America stands ready to lead.
“President Obama’s request was a mere 8% increase in what a wide range of national security and foreign policy experts have warned is an underfunded, undermanned civilian capacity. Even with this increase, the International Affairs Budget is just 1.4% of the overall Federal budget and 0.35% of GDP – a small but important investment that pays large dividends for America’s standing abroad and our economic and national security at home.
“We urge the House and Senate conferees to fully fund the President’s International Affairs budget request when they meet later this month. To do so is in the best interests of our country’s security and prosperity, and an important reflection of America’s strong commitment to humanitarian values.”
The U.S. Global Leadership Campaign (www.usglc.org) 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.