Republican Senator: Foreign Aid Not the Problem in US Spending

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio. Photo by: DavidAll06 / CC BY-SA

In a recent online discussion with his constituents, a freshman Republican senator from Florida showed that not all Republican legislators are after deep cuts on the U.S. foreign aid budget.

“We certainly have to be more careful when spending foreign aid…. On the other hand, sometimes in the press and in the minds of many, our foreign aid is exaggerated,” Sen. Marco Rubio said June 29. “It really is a miniscule part of our overall budget and it’s not the reason we have this growing debt in America.”

Rubio, who has criticized the Obama administration on its policy toward China and Russia and its handling of the war in Libya, also emphasized that “the real problem in America’s spending is not foreign aid,” Josh Rogin notes in Foreign Policy’s “The Cable” blog.

Addressing a concern of one of his constituents that the United States has “already done so much,” the freshman senator argued that foreign aid is important because it helps spread the U.S.’s influence overseas “in a positive way.”

He added that helping developing countries boost their economies is good for the United States’ own economic interests.

“A world where people are prosperous and free to grow their economies and pursue their own dreams and ambitions is a better world for all of us,” Rogin quotes Rubio.

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About the author

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    Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.