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Chair Cardin Disappointed by Proposed 2025 International Affairs Budget Cuts in House Committee Markup

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement in response to the House Appropriations Subcommittee’s markup of the 2025 State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs (SFOPS) funding bill proposal to cut the international affairs budget by 11 percent over FY24:

“In spite of an urgent need for U.S. diplomatic engagement and assistance in a volatile world, House Republicans are abandoning last year’s budget agreement and proposing to slash State Department and USAID budgets. Their bill would drastically cut staffing and programming at our foreign affairs agencies – undermining our ability to deliver on our strategic foreign policy objectives, such as supporting our allies, competing with malign actors, and modernizing our foreign affairs workforce.

“House Republicans have endorsed an SFOPS bill that would starve critical programs, and that falls far below the negotiated spending standards agreed on with President Biden under the Fiscal Responsibility Act. Their bill once again signals their short-sighted isolationism and disregard for key foreign policy priorities, from upholding human rights and global DEI practices to combatting corruption, responding to the climate crisis, and bolstering democratic governance across the globe.

"Specifically, the bill cuts funding for multilateral and U.S. development assistance, including humanitarian assistance, funding to combat the spread of HIV/AIDS, TB, and Malaria, and programs to support children, women, refugees, and other vulnerable communities. Our adversaries are not underinvesting in their diplomatic efforts and neither should we. I strongly urge my House colleagues to reject these proposed cuts and support a strong foreign affairs budget.”