Chairman's Press

May 21, 2013

Syria Transition Support Act Introduced by Menendez, Corker Passes Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Bill Provides for Lethal Aid and Training to Vetted Syrian Opposition, Sanctions Weapon Sales and Petroleum Sales to the Assad Regime, While Delivering Humanitarian Assistance and Planning for a Post-Assad Syria WASHINGTON, DC - The Syria Transition Support Act, bipartisan legislation introduced by U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Ranking Member Bob Corker (R-TN) passed the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. The legislation plans for a post-Assad Syri… Continue Reading


May 15, 2013

In Case You Missed It: Obama Administration Stonewalls American People on Corker Question about Secret U.S. Cash Payments to Afghan President

WASHINGTON - At a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing today, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman stonewalled the American people when asked by U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the committee, whether allegations of secret U.S. cash payments to Afghan President Hamid Karzai help prevent corruption in Afghanistan. "[D]oes delivering cash to an elected leader--does that help us root out corruption in that country," asked Corker. Sherman responde… Continue Reading


May 15, 2013

Menendez, Corker Introduce Syria Transition Support Act

Bill Provides for Lethal Weapons to Vetted Syrian Opposition, Sanctions Weapon Sales and Petroleum Sales to the Assad Regime, While Delivering Humanitarian Assistance and Planning for a Post-Assad Syria WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Ranking Member Bob Corker (R-TN) today introduced the Syria Transition Support Act, bipartisan legislation that plans for a post-Assad Syria by offering humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people, limi… Continue Reading


May 14, 2013

Corker Continues to Seek Explanation from President Obama for Secret U.S. Cash Payments to Afghan President

WASHINGTON - Following up on a May 2 letter to President Obama today, U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, continued to seek an explanation for reports alleging the U.S. has made millions of dollars in secret cash payments to Afghan President Hamid Karzai over the past decade. Responding to press inquiries, President Karzai has said the payments are "the choice of the American government" and will continue following personal assurances from… Continue Reading


May 10, 2013

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Republicans Request Hearing on Benghazi to Address New Revelations on Obama Administration’s Response to Attacks, Lack of Accountability at State Department

WASHINGTON - In a letter today to Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez, D-N.J., committee Republicans including Bob Corker, R-Tenn.; James E. Risch, R-Idaho; Marco Rubio, R-Fla.; Ron Johnson, R-Wis.; Jeff Flake, R-Ariz.; John Barrasso, Wyo.; and Rand Paul, R-Ky., requested a hearing on the deadly Benghazi terrorist attacks to examine new revelations "regarding the level of security leading up to the attacks and how the State Department and the administration responded to the … Continue Reading


May 08, 2013

In Case You Missed It: Corker on MSNBC Questions Lack of Accountability for State Department Officials Involved in Benghazi Failures

WASHINGTON - Discussing the administration's response to the Benghazi attacks on MSNBC, U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today said he wants to know why four State Department officials are still receiving full pay after being involved in security failures that contributed to the deadly attacks last year. "They're sitting at home with full pay. Americans all across our country are unemployed…There's been no accountability, and I j… Continue Reading


May 02, 2013

Corker Statement on President Obama’s USTR Nomination

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, made the following statement regarding President Obama's nomination of Mike Froman as U.S. Trade Representative. "Mike has been good to work with, and I look forward to talking with him further as I consider his nomination. I am hopeful that this is an indication that the administration is serious about advancing U.S. participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), U.S.-EU trade agreemen… Continue Reading


May 02, 2013

Corker to President Obama: Secret U.S. Cash Payments to Karzai Lack Accountability, Promote Corruption, and Break Trust with Taxpayers

WASHINGTON - In a letter to President Obama today, U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, requested an explanation regarding recent reports alleging the U.S. has made millions of dollars in secret cash payments to Afghan President Hamid Karzai over the past decade. "Our support for the Karzai administration should have evolved long ago into regular and more sustainable efforts that are fully coordinated across the government and are calibr… Continue Reading


April 25, 2013

Corker: U.S. Assessment of Chemical Agent’s Use in Syria “Deeply Troubling”

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today said a U.S. intelligence assessment that chemical agents have been used in Syria is "deeply troubling." Corker was among a bipartisan group of senators yesterday who sent a letter to the president asking for an unclassified answer to whether "the Assad regime - or Syrian elements associated with, or supported by, the Assad regime - used chemical weapons in Syria since the current confl… Continue Reading


April 24, 2013

Bipartisan Group of Senators Introduce Organization of American States Revitalization and Reform Act of 2013

WASHINGTON, DC - A bipartisan group of senators introduced the Organization of American States (OAS) Revitalization and Reform Act of 2013. This legislation urges the implementation of certain management reforms at the OAS and requires the Secretary of State to identify a path toward the adoption of these reforms, while declaring the organization the primary multi-lateral diplomatic entity for regional disputes and promotion of democratic governance. The bill was introduced today by Foreign Rel… Continue Reading


April 24, 2013

New York Times (OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR): Dithering While Damascus Burns

By BOB CORKERPublished: April 23, 2013AS Syria slips further into chaos, America is acting hesitantly at a pivotal moment for our national interests and for those of our allies in the region.It appears that President Bashar al-Assad's fall is inevitable, but the question is how long it will take and how much suffering and bloodshed will occur before it happens. There is a looming second battle in Syria, as the opposition is divided along sectarian lines and between moderates and extremists. Simp… Continue Reading


April 18, 2013

Corker & Inhofe Foreign Policy – National Security (Rebuttal): Off to a Bad Start

BY SEN. JIM INHOFE, SEN. BOB CORKER | APRIL 18, 2013 In his April 8 article on FP, "Time to Face Facts," Secretary of State John Kerry observed how "in the Senate, we clawed our way to ratification [of the New START Treaty] with 71 votes, a big bipartisan statement that the arms control and nonproliferation consensus could hold together even in a polarized political culture." The secretary fails to mention, however, that the reason he, as chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, was able t… Continue Reading


April 18, 2013

Corker: President’s FY 2014 State Department Budget Request “Reflects Sense of Uncertainty” on Planning for Syria and Unanswered Questions on Benghazi

WASHINGTON - During a hearing with Secretary of State John Kerry on President Obama's FY 2014 State Department budget request, U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said the request "reflects a sense of uncertainty in key areas," including U.S. planning for the deteriorating conflict in Syria and "critical unanswered questions" regarding the response to leadership failures from last year's deadly attack at the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya.… Continue Reading


April 16, 2013

Corker WSJ Op-ed: Does China Really Want a Nuclear Japan and South Korea?

By BOB CORKER North Korea's increased belligerence has alarmed the U.S. and its allies and heightened tensions in the Asian-Pacific region. As usual, though, the hand-wringing in Washington, Tokyo, Beijing and Seoul isn't accompanied by any new ideas on what to do to solve the perennial problem of Pyongyang and its illicit nuclear weapons program. Most problematic, perhaps, is that nothing has altered the strategic calculus of China-the most influential player with respect to North Korea, and … Continue Reading


April 14, 2013

Corker Statement on Secretary Kerry Clarifying Comments on U.S. Missile Defense Concessions

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. -- U.S. Senator Bob Corker, ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today made the following statement in response to Secretary of State John Kerry clarifying previous remarks on the willingness of the U.S. to make concessions on missile defense in return for North Korea ending its nuclear program. "I thank Secretary Kerry for clarifying his remarks about American missile defenses. The security of our country and its allies should never be a bargaining chip… Continue Reading


April 12, 2013

Corker Says Japan's Participation in Trans-Pacific Trade Talks Good for Growing Jobs, Economy in US

WASHINGTON - In response to an agreement today signifying U.S. support for Japan's involvement in trans-Pacific trade talks, U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said Japan's full participation in these negotiations and the successful formation of a Trans-Pacific Partnership would "hold great potential for expanding job and economic growth" in the U.S. and Tennessee. "Japanese investment in Tennessee has created good-paying jobs and growth … Continue Reading


April 11, 2013

Corker Warns of Lack of Clarity in US Syria Strategy, Calls for Post-Assad Plan and Congressional Consultation Prior to Significant Changes in US Involvement

WASHINGTON - During a hearing on the crisis in Syria with senior Obama administration officials, U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, warned that an ad hoc, reactive approach leaves the United States vulnerable to being drawn into "very dangerous circumstances" without a clear strategy. Corker called for a clear articulation of U.S. goals and plans, advance preparations for the eventual fall of the Assad regime, and close congressional consu… Continue Reading


April 08, 2013

Corker to President Obama: Senate Must Be Fully Consulted Prior to Expanded U.S. Involvement to Stem Crisis in Syria

WASHINGTON - In a letter to President Barack Obama, U.S. Senator Bob Corker, ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said the Senate must be fully consulted before any decision to expand U.S. involvement to stem the crisis in Syria, including any lethal assistance to Syrian opposition forces or U.S. military action. "As you consider further action regarding the deteriorating humanitarian, security, and political situation in Syria, I want to express to you directly that I expe… Continue Reading


April 08, 2013

Corker Statement on Passing of Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today made the following statement on the passing of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. "Margaret Thatcher will rightly be remembered as a plain-spoken and aggressive advocate for democracy and free markets and for her strong leadership in the fight against communism, which helped preserve and strengthen Western values and institutions for generations to come. Her courage, cle… Continue Reading


March 25, 2013

Corker Bloomberg View Op-Ed: "U.S.-EU Trade Deal Is Good for Jobs and Prosperity"

By Bob Corker Two years ago, Volkswagen AG (VOW) opened a $1 billion manufacturing facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee, that employs 3,300 Americans and makes 150,000 cars a year for the U.S. market and for export to Canada, Mexico and South Korea. This investment has been transformative, creating jobs and growth not only in Tennessee but also throughout the region. It's an experience we can repeat throughout the country if we tear down obstacles to foreign investment and trade. Last week, Pre… Continue Reading

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