In yesterday’s daily press briefing at the State Department, spokesman Ian Kelly responded to a question about the lack of an administrator for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). He noted the number of “factors” that determine when we will have a USAID administrator and underscored the State Department’s anticipation of a nominee. Below is the transcript of the question and answer from the press briefing:
QUESTION: Thanks. Why is it that this Administration has identified the importance of increasing aid to developing nations, but USAID is still without someone at the helm?
MR. KELLY: Ah, you saved the best for last. We do put a very high priority on assisting developing nations, and we’ve been trying very hard to identify, nominate and confirm an administrator for USAID. The fact that we’ve not done that yet in no way indicates any kind of diminishing of the priority that we put on helping people of the developing world to live a better life. We’ve – this Administration has put tremendous time and resources into trying to increase developmental aid.
QUESTION: But it’s been almost a year —
MR. KELLY: No, it has been a long time. We appreciate that.
QUESTION: Is there a timeline then of when someone might be in that position?
MR. KELLY: Well, it depends on a lot of factors. It depends on the White House, of course. It depends on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. But we look forward to having somebody soon.