Chairwoman Lowey Statement at State-Foreign Operations Public Witness Hearing
Congresswoman Nita M. Lowey (D-NY), Chair of the House Appropriations Committee and the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Subcommittee, delivered the following remarks at the Subcommittee's public witness hearing:
To our distinguished witnesses, welcome, and thank you for coming to our Subcommittee to present your views on the agencies and programs funded by the State Department, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs appropriations.
Our public witnesses represent a wide array of perspectives and expertise that help Congress better assess the impact and effectiveness of foreign assistance. As we assess the President’s budget request for Fiscal Year 2020, your voices are critical to the appropriations process.
Let me be clear: Our nation’s security cannot afford a budget that does not adequately fund our diplomatic and development programs, or life-saving humanitarian assistance. The draconian cuts this administration continues to advocate are irresponsible – particularly at a time of unprecedented human suffering – and wholesale, haphazard cuts are not an option.
For as long as I have been a part of this Subcommittee, we have had bipartisan agreement that foreign assistance is critical to our national security and to maintaining America’s leadership role in the world. As Chairwoman, I have every expectation that we will produce a bill that maximizes each taxpayer dollar while responding to today’s many needs.
We are eager to hear your testimonies and look forward to working with your organizations throughout the appropriations process.
Before we begin with our first witness, let me turn to Ranking Member Rogers for his opening remarks. Mr. Rogers –