Friday, September 09, 2011

GOP Presidential Candidates: Views On Foreign Aid

Foreign aid has always been a touchy issue in U.S. politics and it remains so in the 2012 Presidential campaign. While the Obama administration has emphasized the importance of foreign policy and diplomacy in order to strengthen America’s position globally, the GOP leaders have been less supportive of providing foreign assistance. The GOP Presidential Contenders for 2012 are not exceptions as well. Of all the declared candidates, only Mitt Romney has made foreign policy a somewhat important agenda in his campaign. According to Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, “The United States faces numerous challenges abroad. China is emerging, Russia is resurgent, and radical, violent jihadists seek our destruction. We must rise to these challenges to preserve our interests and promote peace. Mitt Romney believes that peace and prosperity around the world depend on a strong America. That requires a strong military, a strong economy, and a renewed diplomatic strategy that advances the cause of freedom, human rights, and opportunity.”

Among other declared candidates, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Jon Huntsman and Newt Gingrich have sometimes talked about the importance of diplomacy and international cooperation in order to ensure national security, but have not provided any concrete agenda regarding foreign aid. While Perry believes that U.S. must strengthen its diplomatic relationships, and stand firm with allies against the common enemies, Bachmann is all for reducing the amount of generosity that Americans show toward other nations and focusing more on the national prosperity. Huntsman believes that the best long-term national security strategy is to rebuild the core at home, but Gingrich supports a unified grand strategy that will marginalize and defeat radical Islamists across the world in order to achieve victory for Americans.

All the GOP Presidential Contenders are up for maintaining peace and prosperity locally and globally, but the majority is doubtful about providing foreign assistance as a means for achieving stability.

-Nisha Noor