A week ago Sunday, Americans woke to the news of the most deadly terrorist attack on American soil since 9/11. We mourn the 49 Americans who died far too soon, and we pray for a full recovery for the 53 who were injured. While many questions remain unanswered, it is clear that serious “red flags,” which could have prevented this attack, were missed.
Unfortunately, attacks motivated by Islamist ideology have reached nearly all corners of the globe. Look no further than Paris, Brussels, Indonesia, Turkey and our neighbors in San Bernardino. It is clear that our current efforts against radical Islamist extremism are insufficient.
For the past eight years, President Obama’s failed foreign policies have made us less safe. On the world stage, the Obama administration has broken promises, made concessions, failed our allies and retreated. Where America should lead, we have fallen behind, and as a direct consequence, those who seek to do harm have stepped into the breach.
The administration entered into a dangerous nuclear agreement with Iran – the world’s largest state sponsor of terror. North Korea, another hostile dictatorial regime, has made significant progress on its nuclear capabilities and has even tested ballistic missiles that are intended to deliver those warheads to the U.S.
Meanwhile, this administration continues to negotiate with those who perpetrate evil around the globe. It weakly refused to enforce its red line in Syria. It naively pushed the “Russian Reset,” which has only led to an emboldened Russia. It tied our Navy’s hands as China builds island fortresses in the South China Sea. It agreed to “lead from behind” to destabilize Libya and in the process turned it into a terrorist safe-haven on the Mediterranean Sea.
The president serves as our commander-in-chief, but he has failed to fulfill his constitutional responsibility by refusing to put forth a detailed plan to defeat the Islamic State.
The federal government’s primary responsibility is to keep our nation safe, but it is more apparent now than ever that we are falling short. While Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives are working to implement a long-term strategy, we know that immediate action is required. We must act now.
On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed the Countering Terrorist Radicalization Act, to provide the Department of Homeland Security with the tools it needs to help defeat radical Islamist terrorism, prevent attacks, stop the radicalization on our soil, and keep terrorists from entering America. We need to ensure these bills are signed into law as soon as possible, and I am hopeful the Senate will immediately take up this legislation and send it to the president’s desk for his signature.
But House Republicans are looking far beyond this vote. We know the global threats we face are grave, and we know that in a few years, America will face evolving and unknown threats. We want to ensure that America is prepared for these threats and once again asserts its role as a global superpower and the world’s indispensable nation.
On June 9, we released “A Better Way to Keep Us Safe and Free,” to strengthen America’s national security and keep Americans secure. We are showing the American people exactly what we will do in 2017 and far beyond if given the opportunity.
Our plan will provide a better way to strengthen our military and protect the homeland in an increasingly dangerous world. It includes 67 detailed policy recommendations, many of which are focused on defeating radical Islamic terrorism, because rooting out this extremist ideology is necessary to ensure the security of Americans at home and abroad.
This agenda was written with the understanding that our homeland faces a great variety of threats from border security to cybersecurity and with the understanding that new threats will emerge. It prioritizes our relationships with allies. It ensures that our military and law enforcement officers have the tools they need to complete their missions, including providing our veterans with the care they have earned. It will require law enforcement to work with technology experts – bringing together the best minds in one room to find ways to combat cyber threats.
I encourage you to visit better.gop to read all the details.
President Reagan famously advocated for “peace through strength.” I believe our plan will accomplish just that, and I remain committed to doing everything in my power to ensure our nation’s safety.