In an effort to address the many global challenges the U.S. faces today through increased partnership and multilateral engagement, Congressman Russ Carnahan (D-MO) and Congressman Anh “Joe” Cao (R-LA) created the American Engagement Caucus. The new caucus establishes a forum for Members to discuss best practices and lessons learned from international bodies like the United Nations and the African Union and partnerships made between countries to overcome threats. A statement from the caucus reads “America’s security, economic, environmental, and moral interests are inextricably linked with those of the international community. The United States must find creative new approaches for working with other nations to create a safer, more peaceful, prosperous, and just world.”
MFAN Principal and President and CEO of InterAction Sam Worthington noted, “We are pleased to have the opportunity to work with the new American Engagement Caucus and Representatives Carnahan and Cao as we draw on our common goal of an American foreign policy that demonstrates in word and deed the desire of the American people to work in a bipartisan manner with all of our partners and with multilateral institutions to build a more just and sustainable world.”
The American Engagement Caucus is guided by the following principles:
- Smart Power: To achieve its security objectives, America must project smart power—a blend of military strength and creative diplomacy. America always reserves the right to act in service of its national interests, but prefers and prioritizes international cooperation to address common concerns and shared objectives
- Don’t Go It Alone: In today’s interconnected world, America can’t go it alone. International cooperation is a better way of addressing some of the world’s key problems, whether they are economic problems, environmental problems, or problems of peace and war.
- Cooperation and global partnerships are essential for security: Given threats from terrorist groups ad unstable foreign regimes with nuclear capabilities, working with other countries around the world is essential to our security. Other nations can help shoulder the burden of counterterrorism efforts, especially in regions where the U.S. may lack access and leverage. And America must balance our military might with diplomacy in order to successfully address global security challenges like nuclear proliferation and terrorism.
- International engagement expands trade opportunities: By creating new international markets, we cancapitalize on the power of American innovation to spur economic development and job growth here at home.
- A srong relationship between the U.S. and the United Nations is key to rebuilding alliances and keeping us safe: Our standing in the world is in large ways shaped by and representative of our engagement with the United Nations. It is in America’s economic, environmental and security interest to work with the UN to solve global challenges.
- America’s economic and environmental interests are irrefutably connected: Addressing climate change through new, clean energy strategies will reduce our dependence on oil, revitalize the American heartland and give developing countries a chance to meet their own energy needs and alleviate poverty.
Current membership for the American Engagement Caucus includes:
- Russ Carnahan (D-MO)
- Anh “Joseph” Cao (R-LA)
- Brad Miller (D-NC)
- Laura Richardson (D-CA)
- Bill Delahunt (D-MA)
- Joe Sestak (D-PA)
- Dave Loebsack (D-IA)
- Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX)
- Mike Honda (D-CA)