Beto O`Rourke on Foreign Policy

Democratic candidate for President; Texas Senator nominee


U.S. investment in Brazil incentivizes burning the Amazon

Q: The Amazon is being burned. A big incentive for deforestation comes from U.S. investors in the Brazilian meat industry. How will you use U.S. trade leverage to encourage Brazil to protect these vital resources?

O'ROURKE: Our involvement and investment in Brazil is one of the pernicious outcomes of Donald Trump's trade policies. This trade war with China is providing an incentive for people to burn down the Amazon rainforest to plant soybeans so that they can sell into China because China right now is looking for new producers for those soybeans that they are no longer buying from the U.S. Our focus [should be] to save the lungs of the planet that produce 6 percent of the oxygen that we breathe and to ensure that we do not trigger a crisis in the Amazon. Once it is set, we will never be able to roll back. This is our opportunity. That is the threat that we face. And so we must be an international leader on these issues.

Source: CNN Climate Crisis Town Hall marathon (10 Democrats) , Sep 4, 2019

We left Puerto Rico unprotected & under-funded for disasters

Q: Puerto Rico was in the international media about the wrong handling of assistance that were sent after the hurricane hit. What will your plan be to make sure that victims get the necessary assistance?

O'ROURKE: I hope it makes everybody angry the way that we've treated the people of Puerto Rico, our fellow Americans who were left in harms' way without the necessary investment in the infrastructure to mitigate the storms that we knew were going to hit them. There are only more severe and more frequent and more devastating, thanks to our emissions & our inaction in the face of climate change. And to add insult to injury, President Trump is taking money away from FEMA. So I want to make sure that we fully fund those disaster response agencies. I want to make sure that we fully fund pre-disaster mitigation grants because we know the people of Puerto Rico are going to see more storms--only much larger and much deadlier. And so we need to invest ahead of time, not afterwards.

Source: CNN Climate Crisis Town Hall marathon (10 Democrats) , Sep 4, 2019

Syrian War partly based on climate; expect more migration

I read the work that scientists produce [on climate change]. I also read a book that changed fundamentally how I look at this: The Uninhabitable Earth, which describes the consequences of our inaction--in the year 2100, this planet will have warmed five degrees Celsius. As scientists say, at that point we are screwed. We will not be able to live in the places that we call home today. There will be a fierce competition for resources. Wars that were precipitated by climate change like Syria will pale in comparison to the wars that we see in the future. And if you think that apprehending 400,000 at the US-Mexico border last year was a big number, wait until some parts of the Western Hemisphere can no longer support human life because that's exactly where we are headed unless we decide to change course [within] 10 years. We do not have any room for error. Those scientists will be part of the team leading the effort in my administration and we will be up to this challenge and overcome it.
Source: CNN Climate Crisis Town Hall marathon (10 Democrats) , Sep 4, 2019

Let Puerto Rico determine its own future

We need to make sure for the people of Puerto Rico can determine their future. Now whether that is independence, whether they want to remain a territory or whether that is statehood with two U.S. senators who can go to town for them in the U.S. Congress to bring down the resources that they need. We need to support the people of Puerto Rico.
Source: Climate Crisis Town Hall (CNN 2019 Democratic primary) , Sep 4, 2019

Would talk to North Korea, but only if it gets results

I would continue diplomacy contingent on progress that keeps this country and our allies safe. Despite three years of almost bizarre foreign policy from this President, this country is no safer when it comes to North Korea. They have removed none of their nuclear weapons. We've added legitimacy to Kim Jong-un. I want to make sure that we pursue diplomatic, peaceful, nonviolent negotiations to resolve the challenges that we face on the Korean Peninsula and ensure that we denuclearize that area.
Source: CBS Face the Nation 2019 interview , Jun 30, 2019

Diplomacy should yield results: none yet with North Korea!

I would continue diplomacy contingent on progress that keeps this country and our allies safe. Despite three years of almost bizarre foreign policy, this country is no safer when it comes to North Korea. They have removed none of their nuclear weapons or their potential to deliver them to the United States. In contravention of the United Nations they have launched other missiles flouting the diplomacy that this President has attempted so far. We've added legitimacy to Kim Jong-un.
Source: CBS Face the Nation 2019 interview series , Jun 30, 2019

Trump embraces dictators at expense of great democracies

Q: Does the United States have a responsibility to protect in the case of genocide or crimes against humanity?

O'Rourke: Yes, but that action should always be undertaken with allies and partners and friends. When the United States presents a united front, we have a much better chance of achieving our foreign policy aims and preventing the kind of genocide to which you refer. Unfortunately, Trump has alienated our allies. He's diminished our standing in the world and he's made us weaker, less able to confront challenges, whether it's Iran or North Korea or Vladimir Putin in Russia, who attacked our democracy in 2016, and who Trump has offered another invitation to do the same. He's embraced strongmen and dictators at the expense of the great democracies. I will ensure that we strengthen those alliances.

Source: June Democratic Primary debate (first night in Miami) , Jun 26, 2019

Help refugee asylum seekers at home in Northern Triangle

O'Rourke argued that to solve America's problems at the border, America's leaders must "help people in Central America where they are." In so doing, he began laying a foundation to effectively rebut Donald Trump on his signature issue: immigration.

O'Rourke's competitors are right to demand a fairer & more humane system for evaluating asylum claims. But an improved asylum system won't reduce the number of people fleeing violence in Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador--Central America's "Northern Triangle." To the contrary, the better chance migrants have of gaining asylum, the more likely they are to seek it.

By addressing the roots of the migration problem, O'Rourke's proposal evades Trump's trap. The migrant "caravans" that Trump demonizes hail from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, where a brutal fight between organized-crime cartels has driven violence to levels that are unprecedented outside a war zone. American aid can reduce this violence and the migration it creates.

Source: The Atlantic Magazine on 2020 Democratic primary , Apr 1, 2019

Invest in improving Northern Triangle of Central America

If things are so desperate in Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador that someone would risk their lives to come here [in the migrant caravan], then what can we do to improve conditions there? We've invested trillions of dollars in our wars in the Middle East. Can we invest some fraction of that to revive the stability in the Northern Triangle countries of Central America to make sure that people have a reason to stay and raise their families where they were born?
Source: ABC This Week on 2018 Texas Senate race , Oct 21, 2018

CC:Keep alliance with Israel.

O`Rourke supports the CC survey question on supporting Israel

The Christian Coalition Voter Guide inferred whether candidates agree or disagree with the statement, 'The US Should Continue to Support and Stand with the Nation of Israel Against her Enemies ' Christian Coalition's self-description: "Christian Voter Guide is a clearing-house for traditional, pro-family voter guides. We do not create voter guides, nor do we interview or endorse candidates."

Source: Christian Coalition Surve 18CC-17 on Jul 1, 2018

Other candidates on Foreign Policy: Beto O`Rourke on other issues:
2020 Presidential Democratic Primary Candidates:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 GOP and Independent Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (Libertarian-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Howie Hawkins (Green-NY)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich (R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence (R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
CEO Howard Schultz (I-WA)
Pres.Donald Trump (R-NY)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
V.C.Arvin Vohra (Libertarian-MD)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld (L-NY,R-MA)
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External Links about Beto O`Rourke:

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
State Rep.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)

Page last updated: Dec 15, 2019