WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) issued the following statement upon being named chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for the 114th Congress. Corker’s appointment will be confirmed Thursday during a meeting of Senate Republicans and is expected to be ratified when the Senate passes a resolution officially organizing committees in the coming days.
“Tennesseans have given me the great privilege of serving in the United States Senate, and I am excited about the opportunity to lead the Senate Foreign Relations Committee at a time when pragmatic U.S. leadership around the world matters more than ever to our nation’s security and prosperity. We look forward to continuing to strengthen the committee’s role in the Senate and working with members of both parties to provide oversight and accountability to the State Department and its activities globally.
“With limited resources, Congress must work to ensure the American people that their taxpayer dollars are used efficiently in advancing U.S. interests. We will begin conducting immediately a thorough review of all State Department programs and practices, with the goal of passing a responsible reauthorization of the department, something Congress has not done in 13 years. We must also do a better job of explaining how strategic U.S. engagement overseas improves our economy and makes us safer here at home.
“The United States is confronting numerous serious challenges around the world, and I’m committed to making this committee a place where we can have robust and thoughtful debate, where the views of all members can be heard, and together, we can help strengthen this nation for generations to come.”
Since taking office in 2007, Corker has been a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and has visited more than 60 different countries to gain a deeper understanding of the strategic relationships between the U.S. and other nations that are critical to the American economy and national security. As chairman, Corker will work with his colleagues to set the committee agenda and help carry out the legislative and oversight responsibilities of the committee.
Established in 1816 as one of the original standing committees of the Senate, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee has jurisdiction over legislation concerning the conduct of U.S. foreign policy, including foreign assistance, treaties, and declarations of war. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee also is responsible for oversight of the U.S. State Department and review of executive branch nominations that carry out U.S. diplomacy, including secretary of state and U.S. ambassadorships.
In addition to chairing the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Corker is an active member of the Senate Banking Committee, the Budget Committee and the Aging Committee.