Amy Klobuchar on Foreign Policy
DFL Sr Senator (MN); Democratic presidential contender
Klobuchar: As James Madison said at the constitutional convention, he said the reason that we have these impeachment articles in the constitution, is because he feared that a president would betray the trust of the American people for a foreign power. That is what happened here. This is a global Watergate. In the case of [Richard Nixon's] Watergate, a paranoid president facing election looked for dirt on a political opponent. He did it by getting people to break in. This president did it by calling a foreign leader to look for dirt on a political opponent. And I would make this case: as we face his trial in the Senate, if the president claims that he is so innocent, then why doesn't he have all the president's men testify? Richard Nixon had his top people testify. We should be hearing from [Chief of Staff Mick] Mulvaney, from [National Security Advisor John] Bolton.
And I actually have given speeches at home about my own state's transition from isolationism. When Ignatius interviewed me for that column, I told him that as a senator from the Midwest that I believed that we needed to embrace rather than tolerate internationalism. He summarized my comments by saying that after a difficult decade the United States needs a refreshed internationalism that recognizes its stake in the world, even as it avoids costly military commitments where possible. He called this approach internationalism of the heartland. And I think it is more important now more than ever.
So we'll start with restoring American leadership. We have to send a clear message that America is once again a global power of good. Trust from our allies that we will stand with them is key, and trust from our adversaries that we will oppose them and defeat them.
In my first one hundred days as president, I will launch an effort to rebuild and restore our diplomatic corps. That begins with immediately depoliticizing foreign policymaking and ensuring that the State Department and international agencies receive sufficient funding. We will recruit a new generation of Foreign Service officers.
If you're China and looking at us right now, you see a president that doesn't keep his decisions seven minutes from now. He has used a meat cleaver--or, should I say, a tweet cleaver--and is creating chaos with his erratic approach.
KLOBUCHAR: We need a new foreign policy in this country, and that means renewing our relationships with our allies. It means rejoining international agreements. When the president did not stand up the way he should have to that killing and that dismemberment of a journalist with an American newspaper, that sent a signal to all dictators across the country that was OK, and that's wrong.
V.P. Joe BIDEN: Khashoggi was murdered on the order of the crown prince. I would make it clear we were not going to sell more weapons to them, we were going to make them the pariah that they are.
Q: And what about Russia and China?
KLOBUCHAR: We must start negotiating with Russia, which has been a horrible player on the international scene. We must start the negotiations for the New START Treaty. When it comes to China, we need someone that sees the long term, like I do, like the Chinese do, because we have a president that makes decisions based on his next tweet.
Mayor Pete BUTTIGIEG: Soldiers in the field are reporting that they feel ashamed of what their country has done.
Rep. Tulsi GABBARD: What you're saying is that you would continue to support having U.S. troops in Syria for an indefinite period of time to continue this regime change war?
BUTTIGIEG: What we were doing in Syria was keeping our word.
I think we need to talk about this a not only in terms of the horror of what happened here with Turkey. Think about our other allies, Israel. How do they feel right now? Donald Trump is not true to his word. Think about our allies in Europe when he pulls out of the Iranian agreement, and leaves them holding the bag, and gives the power to China and Russia. Think about the nuclear agreement with Russia that he precipitously pulled out of. This is part of a pattern. It's not an isolate
A: It was imperfect, but it was a good deal for that moment. I would have worked to get longer sunset periods, and that's something we could negotiate, to get back in the deal. But Trump told us when he got out of it that he was going to give us a better deal. Now we are a month away from the Iranians, who claim now that they're going blow the caps on enriching uranium. And the Iranians have told us this.
So working with our allies, investing in diplomacy, modernizing our military, and then taking on those big challenges that are in front of us. I would list them as the Mideast, the challenge we have with climate change. And, of course, dealing with the nuclear threat that we have with North Korea as well as with Russia's continuing pushing at our country.
KLOBUCHAR: Having been the local prosecutor during 9/11 when they caught Moussaoui, in our state [Minnesota], I know that you want to make sure that you have the evidence clear before you make statements about a solution. But we know some of the things that have to happen here. The continual work to root out this evil at its roots at the enclave of ISIS in Iraq and Syria, to stop the flow of the international money, to go after the recruiting that we've seen in the US over the Internet.
Q: In Minnesota, there have been numerous cases about people being recruited to part of the ISIS campaign?
KLOBUCHAR: Yes; dozens of indictments & recent jury verdicts. And what we've found is that individual people are recruited over the Internet. No mom wants their kid recruited to go fight for ISIS. You don't want to indict an entire religion, you don't want to indict an entire community over a lone wolf.
KLOBUCHAR: As a prosecutor, I know that when people cross a line, thereís got to be consequences. And in foreign affairs, itís the same thing. I believe these sanctions are incredibly important; we canít have North Korea begin to be some kind of weapons factory.
Q: If the North Koreans ignore the sanctions, what do we do?
KLOBUCHAR: We have to keep ratcheting things up. We have to keep working with our partners. But one of the things that went wrong here is that these multilateral discussions broke down, North Korea walked away from the table, and I believe we have to keep talking. Itís good that Chinaís part of this, but if itís moving in the right direction and if we believe itís in our national security interests, we should be talking to them directly. I mean, even during the Cold War we kept talking to Russia. And so the discussions are important, and we need to keep the diplomatic pressure on.
Proponent's argument to vote Yes:Rep. HOWARD BERMAN (D, CA-28): Integrating India into a global nonproliferation regime is a positive step. Before anyone gets too sanctimonious about India's nuclear weapons program, we should acknowledge that the five recognized nuclear weapons states have not done nearly enough to fulfill their commitments under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, including making serious reductions in their own arsenals, nor in the case of the US in ratifying the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
Opponent's argument to vote No:Rep. BARBARA LEE (D, CA-9): In withholding my approval, I seek not to penalize the people of India but, rather, to affirm the principle of nuclear nonproliferation. Jettisoning adherence to the international nuclear nonproliferation framework that has served the world so well for more than 30 years, as approval of the agreement before us would do, is just simply unwise. It is also reckless.
Approval of this agreement undermines our efforts to dissuade countries like Iran and North Korea from developing nuclear weapons. By approving this agreement, all we are doing is creating incentives for other countries to withdraw from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
The Arab American Institute has compiled a Scorecard to catalogue the voting record of the 112th Congress on issues of importance to the Arab American community. Though not comprehensive, we have attempted to provide a snapshot of legislation concerning many of the primary issues concerning Arab Americans. For the Senate, we have included 10 items: two bills on the Arab Spring, three on Palestine, one on Lebanon, one regarding civil liberties, and two for immigration reform.
Expresses the sense of Congress that:
White House Summary of NAP, December 2011:The goal of this National Action Plan is as simple as it is profound: to empower half the world's population as equal partners in preventing conflict and building peace in countries threatened and affected by war, violence, and insecurity. Deadly conflicts can be more effectively avoided, and peace can be best forged and sustained, when women become equal partners. The National Action Plan is guided by the following five principles:
RESOLUTION expressing vigorous support and unwavering commitment to the welfare, security, and survival of the State of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state with secure borders:
Proponent's argument for bill:(by United Free Syria organization): House of Representatives: Free Syria Act (HR.1327):
Excerpts from Letter from 73 Senators to Secretary of State Kerry We are deeply concerned by the decision of the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to seek membership in the International Criminal Court (ICC), because the Palestinian Authority is not a state and its express intent is to use this process to threaten Israel.
Pres. Abbas' effort contravene the spirit of earlier agreements between Israel and the Palestinian Authority and erodes the prospect for peace. Therefore, the US must make clear that joining the ICC is not a legitimate or viable path for Palestinians.
Israel is a major strategic partner of the US and is facing increasing pressure from those who seek to delegitimize its very existence. The only realistic and sustainable path to resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is through direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.
Supporting argument: (Heritage Foundation, "U.S. Should Not Join the ICC," Aug. 18, 2009): The ICC prosecutor is exploring a request by the Palestinian National Authority to prosecute Israeli commanders for alleged war crimes committed during the recent actions in Gaza. Palestinian lawyers maintain that the Palestinian National Authority can request ICC jurisdiction as the de facto sovereign even though it is not an internationally recognized state. By countenancing Palestine's claims, the ICC prosecutor has enabled pressure to be applied to Israel over alleged war crimes, while ignoring Hamas's incitement of the military action and its commission of war crimes against Israeli civilians. Furthermore, by seemingly recognizing Palestine as a sovereign entity, the prosecutor's action has created a pathway for Palestinian statehood without first reaching a comprehensive peace deal with Israel. This determination is an inherently political issue beyond the ICC's authority.
Congressional Summary: S.Res.6/H.Res.11 objects to U.N. Security Council Resolution 2334, which characterizes Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem as illegal and demands cessation of settlement activities.
Opposing argument: (Cato Institute, Dec. 19, 2003): In principle, separation seems the best answer to stop the killing. For this reason, a security fence makes sense--if it actually separates Jew from Arab. Unfortunately, to protect a number of disparate Israeli settlements erected in the midst of Palestinian communities, Israel currently is mixing Jew and Arab and separating Arab from Arab. Thus are sown the seeds for conflict. After 36 years of occupation, the land remains almost exclusively Arab. The limited Jewish presence is the result of conscious colonization. The settlements require a pervasive Israeli military occupation, imposing a de facto system of apartheid. Separation offers the only hope, but separation requires dismantling Israeli settlements.
The Christian Coalition Voter Guide inferred whether candidates agree or disagree with the statement, 'The US Should Continue to Support and Stand with the Nation of Israel Against her Enemies ' Christian Coalition's self-description: "Christian Voter Guide is a clearing-house for traditional, pro-family voter guides. We do not create voter guides, nor do we interview or endorse candidates."
Legislative summary: The Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act:
Statement in support by Sen. Cruz: Sen. Ted Cruz joined Sen. Marco Rubio in introducing H.R.6210 to hold the Chinese Communist Party accountable for the use of force labor. "The Chinese Communist Party has transformed Xinjiang into a technological dystopia and a human rights horror," Sen. Cruz said. "Time and time again from the CCP we see the complete and total disregard for human life and values.."
Statement in opposition in Washington Post: Researchers estimate the Chinese government has placed more than 1 million people into internment camps in Xinjiang. While US law already prevents companies from importing goods that were made using forced labor, the law is seldom enforced. Apple is heavily dependent on Chinese manufacturing; alleged forced Uighur labor has been used in Apple's supply chain. A report from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute alleged four instances in which labor from the Xinjiang region has been connected to Apple's supply chain: In 2017, the Chinese government transferred between 1,000 and 2,000 Uighurs to work at a factory owned by O-Film, which helps make selfie cameras for Apple's iPhone.
Legislative outcome: Passed House 406 3-22,(2/3 required) Roll no. 196 on 09/22/2020.
A resolution condemning the violence in Tibet and calling for restraint by the Government of the People's Republic of China and the people of Tibet. Calls for:
Prohibits the President from regulating or prohibiting travel to or from Cuba by U.S. citizens or legal residents or any of the transactions ordinarily incident to such travel, except in time of war or armed hostilities between the United States and Cuba, or of imminent danger to the public health or the physical safety of U.S. travelers.
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Senate races 2021-22:
AK: Incumbent Lisa Murkowski(R)
vs.Challenger Kelly Tshibaka(R)
vs.2020 candidate Al Gross(D)
AL: Incumbent Richard Shelby(R) vs.U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks(R) vs.Ambassador Lynda Blanchard(R) vs.Katie Britt(R) vs.Judge Jessica Taylor(R) vs.Brandaun Dean(D) vs.
AR: Incumbent John Boozman(R)
vs.Candidate Dan Whitfield(D)
AZ: Incumbent Mark Kelly(D)
vs.CEO Jim Lamon(R) vs.Blake Masters(R)
vs.A.G. Mark Brnovich(R) vs.Mick McGuire(R)
CA: Incumbent Alex Padilla(D)
vs.2018 Senate candidate James Bradley(R)
vs.State Rep. Jerome Horton(D)
CO: Incumbent Michael Bennet(D)
CT: Incumbent Richard Blumenthal(D)
vs.Challenger Joe Visconti(R)
vs.2018 & 2020 House candidate John Flynn(R)
FL: Incumbent Marco Rubio(R)
vs.U.S.Rep. Val Demings(D)
vs.U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson(D)
GA: Incumbent Raphael Warnock(D)
vs.Navy vet Latham Saddler(R)
HI: Incumbent Brian Schatz(D)
vs.Former State Rep. Cam Cavasso(R ?)
IA: Incumbent Chuck Grassley(R)
vs.State Sen. Jim Carlin(R)
vs.Former U.S. Rep IA-1 Abby Finkenauer(D)
ID: Incumbent Mike Crapo(R)
IL: Incumbent Tammy Duckworth(D)
vs.U.S.Rep. Adam Kinzinger(? R)
IN: Incumbent Todd Young(R)
vs.Challenger Haneefah Abdul-Khaaliq(D)
vs.Psychologist Valerie McCray(D)
KS: Incumbent Jerry Moran(R)
KY: Incumbent Rand Paul(R)
vs.State Rep Charles Booker(D)
LA: Incumbent John Kennedy(R)
MD: Incumbent Chris Van Hollen(D)
MO: Incumbent Roy Blunt(R)
vs.Eric Greitens(R) vs.Scott Sifton(D)
vs.Eric Schmitt(R) vs.Lucas Kunce(D)
vs.Mark McClosky(R) vs.Vicky Hartzler(R)
vs.Tim Shepard(D) vs.Billy Long(R)
NC: Incumbent Richard Burr(R,retiring)
Erica Smith(D) vs.Mark Walker(R)
vs.Ted Budd(R) vs.Pat McCrory(R)
vs.Cheri Beasley(D) vs.Rett Newton(D)
vs.Jeff Jackson(D) vs.Marjorie K. Eastman(R)
ND: Incumbent John Hoeven(R)
vs.Michael J. Steele(D)
NH: Incumbent Maggie Hassan(D)
vs.Chris Sununu(R ?)
NV: Incumbent Catherine Cortez Masto(D)
NY: Incumbent Chuck Schumer(D)
OH: Incumbent Rob Portman(R,retiring)
Bernie Moreno(R) vs.Tim Ryan(D)
vs.Jane Timken(R) vs.Josh Mandel(R)
vs.JD Vance(R) vs.Mike Gibbons(R)
vs.Morgan Harper(D) vs.Matt Dolan(R)
OK: Incumbent James Lankford(R)
OR: Incumbent Ron Wyden(D)
vs.QAnon adherent Jo Rae Perkins(R)
PA: Incumbent Pat Toomey(R,retiring)
vs.Everett Stern(R) vs.Jeff Bartos(R)
vs.Val Arkoosh(D) vs.Carla Sands(R)
vs.John Fetterman(D) vs.Malcolm Kenyatta(D)
vs.Kathy Barnette(R) vs.Sharif Street(D)
vs.Conor Lamb(D) vs.Sean Parnell(R)
vs.Craig Snyder(R) vs.Mehmet Oz(R)
SC: Incumbent Tim Scott(R)
vs.State Rep. Krystle Matthews(D)
SD: Incumbent John Thune(R)
vs.State Rep. Billie Sutton(? D)
UT: Incumbent Mike Lee(R) vs.Allen Glines(D)
vs.Austin Searle(D) vs.Evan McMullin(I)
VT: Incumbent Patrick Leahy(D)
vs.Scott Milne(? R)
WA: Incumbent Patty Murray(D)
vs.Challenger Tiffany Smiley(R)
WI: Incumbent Ron Johnson(R) vs.Tom Nelson(D)
vs.Sarah Godlewski(D) vs.Alex Lasry(D)
vs.Chris Larson(D) vs.Mandela Barnes(D)
Senate Votes (analysis)
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