State of New Hampshire secondary Archives: on Foreign Policy


Bernie Sanders: Key doctrine: We can't do it alone; must work in coalition

Q: You have not proactively laid out a foreign policy doctrine yet. Why?

SANDERS: I did give a speech at Georgetown where I talked about democratic socialism and foreign policy. Maybe I shouldn't have combined the two in the same speech. While it is true that the secretary and I voted differently on the war in Iraq, what is important is that we learn the lesson of the war in Iraq. And that lesson is intrinsic to my foreign policy if elected president, is the United States cannot do it alone. We cannot be the policeman of the world. We are now spending more I believe than the next eight countries on defense. We have got to work in strong coalition with the major powers of the world and with those Muslim countries that are prepared to stand up and take on terrorism. So I would say that the key doctrine of the Sanders administration would be no, we cannot continue to do it alone; we need to work in coalition.

Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire Feb 4, 2016

Bernie Sanders: Encourage Saudis and Iran to work together, despite distrust

CLINTON: A group of national security experts issued a concerning statement about Senator Sanders's views on foreign policy and national security, pointing out some of the comments he has made on these issues, such as inviting Iranian troops into Syria to try to resolve the conflict there; putting them right at the doorstep of Israel. Asking Saudi Arabia and Iran to work together, when they can't stand each other and are engaged in a proxy battle right at this moment. You are voting for a president and a commander in chief.

SANDERS: I concede that Secretary Clinton, who was secretary of State for four years, has more experience in foreign affairs. But experience is not the only point, judgment is. In terms of Iran and in terms of Saudi Arabia, of course they hate each other. That's no great secret. But John Kerry, who is I think doing a very good job, has tried to at least get these people in the room together because both of them are being threatened by ISIS.

Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire Feb 4, 2016

Bernie Sanders: Move forward with Iran with relations the long-term goal

Q [to Clinton]: Sen. Sanders called for moving as aggressively as we can to normalize relations with Iran. You've criticized him for that. Can you explain?

CLINTON: Absolutely. We have to figure out how to deal with Iran as the principal state sponsor of terrorism in the world. They are destabilizing governments in the region. They continue to support Hezbollah and Hamas in Lebanon against Israel. If we were to normalize relations right now, we would remove one of the biggest pieces of leverage we have to try to influence and change Iranian behaviour. The president doesn't think we should. I certainly don't think we should. I believe we have to take this step by step to try to reign in Iranian aggression.

SANDERS: I never said that. I think we should move forward as quickly as we can. They are a sponsor of terrorism around the world and we have to address that. A number of years ago, people were saying, "normal relationship with Cuba, what a bad and silly idea." Well, change has come.

Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire Feb 4, 2016

Bernie Sanders: North Korea is run by nuclear-armed paranoid dictator

North Korea is an isolated country run by a handful of dictators, or maybe just one, who seems to be somewhat paranoid. And, who had nuclear weapons. Our goal there is to work and lean strongly on China to put pressure. China is one of the few major countries in the world that has significant support for North Korea, and we got to do everything we can to put pressure on China. I worry about an isolated, paranoid country with atomic bombs.
Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire Feb 4, 2016

Bernie Sanders: I worry about Putin in Crimea but worry more about N. Korea

Q: Secretary of Defence Ash Carter said Russia is the most important national security threat. Do you agree?

SANDERS: No I don't. I worry about Putin and his military adventurism in the Crimea, but I worry more about an isolated country. Russia lives in the world. China lives in the world. North Korea is a strange country because it is so isolated, and I do feel that a nation with nuclear weapons, they have got to be dealt with.

Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire Feb 4, 2016

Hillary Clinton: Address arc of instability from North Africa to South Asia

Q: How long are US troops going to be in Afghanistan?

CLINTON: The president decided to leave more troops than he had originally planned in Afghanistan. We have a cooperative government there. The Afghan army is fighting and taking heavy losses defending Afghan territory. I would have to make an evaluation based on the circumstances at the time I took office as to how much help they continue to need. It's not just the Taliban. We are seeing, fighters claiming to be affiliated with ISIS. We've got an arc of instability from North Africa to South Asia, and we have to pay close attention to it. We have to build coalitions, something I did to take on the Iranian nuclear program, and what I will do as president.

Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire Feb 4, 2016

Hillary Clinton: Obama trusted my judgment; I'll be ready on Day One

Having run a hard race against Senator Obama, he turned to me to be secretary of State. And when it comes to the biggest counterterrorism issues that we faced in this administration, namely whether or not to go after bin Laden, I was at that table, I was exercising my judgment to advise the president on what to do, on Iran, on Russia on China, on a whole raft of issues. You've got to be ready on day one.
Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire Feb 4, 2016

Hillary Clinton: Need more European contribution to defending against Russia

Q: Secretary of Defence Ash Carter said Russia is the most important national security threat. Do you agree?

CLINTON: What Secretary Carter is looking at is the constant pressure that Russia's putting on our European allies. I think what Secretary Carter is seeing is that we got to get NATO back working for the common defense. We've got to do more to support our partners in NATO, and we have to send a clear message to Putin that this kind of belligerence will have to be responded to.

Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire Feb 4, 2016

Scott Brown: Restore American leadership; we have none now

With the rise of ISIS in the Middle East, foreign affairs have become a central issue in the race. "We need to restore American leadership," Brown said. "I believe there is none. Sen. Shaheen is a member of the Foreign Relations Committee. She does vote with the president over 99% of the time."

"What we need is for people to work together to address these issues. They are serious issues, and what's not helpful is political grandstanding and fear-mongering about the issues we face," Shaheen said.

Source: WMUR ABC-9 Manchester on 2014 New Hampshire Senate debate Oct 7, 2014

Bob Smith: America is in trouble; we need leadership out of this mess

Former U.S. Sens. Bob Smith and Scott Brown focused much of their comments on sitting Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen during a Republican debate. Smith started his opening statement by saying "America is in trouble." "It's going to take strong courageous leadership to get us out of the mess we're in," he said.

Smith then pointed out, as did Brown, a former U.S. senator from Massachusetts, that Shaheen voted with President Obama "99 percent" of the time. "So she deserves part of the blame," Smith said.

Smith said Obama doesn't have a foreign policy and argued that the US is making it harder on our soldiers in the Middle East because of the rules of engagement they operate under. "We cannot win there by tying the hands behind our backs of our military people and then sending them there," he said.

Smith also worried that the US would be "sucked into another war" and said before the government sends our soldiers into harm's way, "then have the guts to vote on a declaration of war."

Source: Portsmouth-Herald on 2014 New Hampshire Senate debate Aug 24, 2014

Scott Brown: Our allies don't trust us, our foes don't fear us

Former U.S. Sens. Bob Smith and Scott Brown focused much of their comments on sitting Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen during a Republican debate. Brown said he feels as if "our world is on fire," and pointed to the recent murder of Rochester journalist James Foley by ISIS. "She has endorsed those failed policies over 99 percent of the time," Brown said, and repeated that statement multiple times.

Brown pointed to the murder of Foley in Syria and said he considers it a "direct threat" when someone "who lives right down the street" is killed by terrorists. "Absolutely we're being spread too thin," he said. "Our allies don't trust us, our foes don't fear us or respect us."

One area where the candidates differed is Rubens' statement that he believes global warming and climate change are man-made while Smith and Brown do not. "I can be independent in my thinking ...; because I don't take special-interest money," Rubens said.

Source: Portsmouth-Herald on 2014 New Hampshire Senate debate Aug 24, 2014

Rick Santorum: Iran's theocracy encourages use of nuclear weapons

Q: Why is it that we cannot live with a nuclear Iran?

SANTORUM: They're a theocracy. They're a theocracy that has deeply embedded beliefs that the afterlife is better than this life. President Ahmadinejad has repeatedly said the principal virtue of the Islamic Republic of Iran is martyrdom. So when your principal virtue is to die for Allah, then it's not a deterrent to have a nuclear threat if they would use a nuclear weapon. It is, in fact, an encouragement for them to use their nuclear weapon, and that's why there's a difference between the Soviet Union and China and others and Iran.

Q: What about Pakistan? They are in indifferent ally at best.

SANTORUM: They are not a theocracy. And we're very hopeful of maintaining a more secular state than is in place today. We've had some real serious problems with the Pakistani military. The reason is we have a president that's just very weak in that region of the world and is not respected.

Source: Meet the Press 2012 GOP New Hampshire debate Jan 8, 2012

Ron Paul: We don't even accept elections from overseas

SANTORUM: As commander in chief, Rep. Paul can pull all our troops back out of overseas, put them here in America, leave us in a situation where the world is now going to be created huge amounts of vacuums all over the place, and have folks like China and Iran and others. Look at the Straits of Hormuz. As I said last night, we wouldn't even have the Fifth Fleet there.

PAUL: We're still running a foreign policy of Woodrow Wilson, trying to make the world safe for democracy. And, look, we have elections overseas, and we don't even accept the elections. Change in foreign policy is significant. But that's where a nation will come down if they keep doing this. We can't stay in 130 countries, get involved in nation building. We cannot have 900 bases overseas. We have to change policy.

Source: Meet the Press 2012 GOP New Hampshire debate Jan 8, 2012

Jon Huntsman: China is our most important relationship of the 21st century

Q: Your vision for dealing with China?

HUNTSMAN: We have the most important relationship of the 21st Century with China. We've got to make it work. Of course we have challenges with them. But it's nonsense to think you can slap a tariff on China the first day that you're in office, as Gov. Romney would like to do. You've got to sit down and sort through the issues of trade. They're all interrelated. And to have a president who actually understands how that relationship works would serve the interest of the people in this country, from an economics standpoint and from a security standpoint.

ROMNEY: I'm sorry, Governor, you were, the last two years, implementing the policies of this administration in China.

HUNTSMAN: I think it's important to note, as they would say in China, that he doesn't quite understand this situation. What he is calling for would lead to a trade war. It makes for a nice applause line but it's far different from the reality in the US-China relationship.

Source: WMUR 2012 GOP New Hampshire debate Jan 7, 2012

Alan Keyes: Clarifying commitment to Taiwan avoids Chinese attack

Q: What would you do if Taiwan declared independence, & the Chinese began to fire missiles?
A: We have to make clear to the Chinese that we intend to make good on our pledges to safeguard the security of Taiwan. A move like that wouldn’t happen without a preceding crisis, in which I would have demonstrated, through the placement of our forces, that we intended to make good on our commitment. To avoid that eventuality, we should stop sending confusing signals about our resolve with respect to Taiwan.
Source: New Hampshire GOP Debates Dec 3, 1999

Alan Keyes: Military intervention to ensure Taiwan’s self-determination

I would put in place the kind of anti-missile defenses that can be extended as an umbrella to protect Taiwan when they come under threats [from China]. Self-determination, allowing people to decide their own destiny, has been fundamental to American foreign policy for decades. We should certainly stand for it where the Taiwanese are concerned. We should make it clear that any [attack by] the Communist Chinese would, in fact, mean a military confrontation with the United States.
Source: New Hampshire GOP Debates Dec 3, 1999

George W. Bush: Texas governorship provides foreign policy experience

To be a good president when it comes to foreign policy, it requires someone with vision, judgment and leadership. I’ve been the governor of the 2nd biggest state. If it were a nation, it would be the 11th largest economy in the world. I have had foreign policy as the governor of Texas, with Mexico. My goal, should I become the President, is to keep the peace. I intend to do so by promoting free trade; by strengthening alliances; and by strengthening the military to make sure that the world is peaceful.
Source: New Hampshire GOP Debates Dec 3, 1999

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