April 15, 2021

Menendez Remarks Ahead of SFRC Approval of Samantha Power to Serve as USAID Administrator

WASHINGTON —  U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today delivered the following opening remarks at this morning’s Committee business meeting calling for the confirmation of the Honorable Samantha Power to serve as Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Ambassador Power’s nomination was approved by voice vote and now moves to the Floor for confirmation by the full Senate.

“As I stated at her hearing, I believe Ambassador Power’s prodigious public service experience and her dedication to the advancement of humanitarian principles make her impeccably qualified to be the next Administrator of USAID. Upon confirmation, I trust that she will appropriately prioritize and elevate this indispensable and often overlooked development arm of U.S. foreign policy,” Chairman Menendez said. “I am confident that Ambassador Power has the capacity and the capability to address these issues, and I am pleased by her commitment, if confirmed, to engage in frequent and open consultation with Congress.”

Find a copy of Senator Menendez’s remarks as delivered below:

“This business meeting of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee will come to order. This morning, we will consider the nomination of Ambassador Samantha Power to be the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development.

As I stated at her hearing, I believe Ambassador Power’s prodigious public service experience and her dedication to the advancement of humanitarian principles make her impeccably qualified to be the next Administrator of USAID. Upon confirmation, I trust that she will appropriately prioritize and elevate this indispensable and often overlooked development arm of U.S. foreign policy.

This nomination comes before the Committee at a crucial time in the agency’s tenure. USAID will play a crucial role in directing the U.S. response to some of the most important issues of our time, including COVID-19, global forced migration, climate change, and human- and resource-driven conflicts.

Upon confirmation, Ambassador Power will also be charged with strengthening a weakened agency. The past four years have taken their toll on USAID – internal morale is wounded, relationships with implementing partners are increasingly strained, and the politicization of aid has tarnished the United States’ reputation as a trustworthy partner.

I am confident that Ambassador Power has the capacity and the capability to address these issues, and I am pleased by her commitment, if confirmed, to engage in frequent and open consultation with Congress. 

With that, I would like to recognize our distinguished Ranking Member, Senator Risch, for his comments.”

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