Michael R. Pompeo
Secretary of State
Opening Statement Before the House Appropriations Committee, Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs
March 27, 2019
SECRETARY POMPEO: Thank you. Chairwoman Lowey, thank you, and I will absolutely summarize. Chairwoman Lowey, Ranking Member Rogers, thank you. Distinguished members of subcommittee, thank you for being with me this morning and thanks for the opportunity to discuss the President’s FY 2020 budget.
I’m glad I’m here. It’s the first hearing in front of the 116th Congress, and I’m glad it is with you all. In order to support the President’s National Security Strategy and achieve our foreign policy goals, we this year submitted a request of $40 billion for the State Department and USAID. It will protect our citizens at home and abroad and advance American prosperity and values. It will support our allies and partners overseas. You should know there are difficult choices when budgets are to be made. You face these constraints too, and we should always be mindful of the burden that American taxpayers have and our obligation to deliver exceptional results on their behalf.
This budget request will help us achieve our diplomatic goals in several ways. First, we’ll make sure that China and Russia cannot gain a strategic advantage in an era of renewed great power competition. We’ll continue our progress toward the final, fully verified denuclearization of North Korea, and we’ll support the people of Venezuela as they work toward a peaceful restoration of democracy and prosperity in their country. We’ll also continue to confront the Islamic Republic of Iran’s malign behavior, and we’ll help our allies and partners become more secure and economically self-reliant. And I’ll also make sure that our world-class diplomatic personnel have the resources they need to execute American diplomacy in the 21st century.
I look forward to continuing to work with each of you on these key foreign policy priorities and many more issues as well. I want to allow enough time for questions, so I’ll keep these remarks short. And with that, I look forward to taking questions from you, Madam Chairwoman, Ranking Member, and other members of your committee. Thank you.