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Foreign Affairs

While much of the power to conduct foreign affairs is granted to the president by the U.S. Constitution, Congress can and should still shape foreign policy and play a vital role in ensuring the world remains a safe place and that our citizens are protected from harm.

For example, Congress maintains control over the “purse strings” and funds our national defense and foreign assistance. As a member of the House Appropriations Committee, I have had the opportunity to see firsthand how foreign assistance is used to support American values all over the world. On average, only about one percent of foreign aid is provided as direct budget support to foreign governments. In fact, most aid is given in the form of expert technical advice, training, equipment, vaccines, food, educational exchanges and applied research. Much of the work done by America and its citizens internationally is crucial to lifting developing countries out of disease and poverty, promoting long-term development and building important relationships.

Additionally, through the appropriations process, Congress can help ensure that funding goes to countries to build stability and counter a variety of international threats, such as terrorism, illegal drugs, and infectious disease. Approximately 1.3 percent of the total federal budget is designated for foreign assistance from all federal sources. Aid that promotes global prosperity, democracy and rule of law, economic growth and humanitarian interests reflects American values and global leadership.

More on Foreign Affairs

September 22, 2021 News Stories
Opposition from liberal House Democrats forced party leaders to cancel $1 billion in funding for Israel's Iron Dome defense system.
August 26, 2021 Press Release
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after news of the attack on the Kabul airport that claimed the lives of at least 12 U.S. military service members and left many other innocent bystanders injured.
August 23, 2021 Weekly Columns
For two decades, our brave men and women in the U.S. military have fought the Taliban and other elements of terror in Afghanistan to not only promote democracy but help stabilize the region and foster peace in this struggling nation. Incredibly, last week, President Joe Biden completely botched the withdrawal of remaining troops from Afghanistan, leaving only fear, desperation and a resurgent Taliban.
August 15, 2021 Press Release
Moore, OK – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement in response to the ongoing and worsening situation in Afghanistan. 
July 26, 2021 Weekly Columns
In recent weeks, we have seen courageous Cubans flood the streets across their country. The Cuban people desperately desire to protest the tyranny and incompetence of the communist dictatorship that has ruled their country with an iron hand for 62 years.
May 28, 2021 Weekly Columns
Every year, the United States welcomes nearly one million immigrants entering our country legally and lawfully. That is more than any other nation in the world. While both Republicans and Democrats agree that immigration reform is needed, President Biden’s policy reform by executive action is severely misguided and irresponsible. And as we have seen in recent months, the consequences of his open border policies are endangering American citizens.
February 19, 2021 Press Release
Norman, OK – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) issued the following statement after learning of reports that the Biden Administration plans to restart negotiations with Iran concerning its nuclear activity.
February 8, 2021 Weekly Columns
Since President Joe Biden was sworn into office just a few weeks ago, he has signed a flurry of executive orders in an attempt to undo many policies of the previous administration. In fact, he has issued more executive orders than any other new president in American history.
October 8, 2020 Weekly Columns

No country has been spared from the repercussions of China’s coronavirus missteps and cover-up that accelerated the current global pandemic. However, the coronavirus crisis is not the first time the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has demonstrated it is an untrustworthy competitor.

September 25, 2020 News Stories
Dozens of Confucius Institutes have sprung up on campuses in recent years, funneling millions of dollars from the CCP to elite colleges and universities.