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Views from the Center

CGD experts offer ideas and analysis to improve international development policy. Also check out our Global Health blog and US Development Policy blog.

 

Attn Bob Schieffer: Three Serious Questions to Throw Obama and Romney Off Kilter

From Big Bird to malarkey to binders full of women, it’s been quite the presidential debate series (there was also that whole dramatic shift in the momentum of the race thing).

On Monday, we’ll hear from President Obama and Governor Romney for 1.5 Bob Schieffer-moderated hours on foreign policy. The topics have already been announced, and while it’s possible some development-related questions could come up (mostly likely under the basket of America’s role in the world), the odds aren’t great. Regardless, here are three questions that I’d like to hear the candidates answer.

2012 SOTU: Bingo Win, Development Defeat

Expectations for a global development focus in President Obama’s State of the Union address were low. Still, more than 130 policy wonks gathered at the Commissary watering hole and eatery in Logan Circle to play CGD State of the Union bingo and many were pleasantly surprised that they could mark off a number of development-related words on their bingo cards.

Can Food Aid Help Feed the Future?

The Partnership to Cut Hunger and Poverty in Africa held an event on Capitol Hill on Friday to launch an excellent report by Stephanie Mercier, a former Senate Ag Committee staffer. I had the pleasure of serving as a discussant.  Though the report title focuses on food aid and the next farm bill, the report also covers the evolution of U.S. food aid and the modest but important improvements that were made in the 2008 farm bill.

Modeling What the New GOP House Means for U.S. Aid to Africa (Hint: -$900m)

This is a joint post with Stephanie Majerowicz.

Our colleagues Sarah Jane Staats and Connie Veillette have already explained how the recent election results might affect foreign aid. The 150 Account, which includes aid, is a prime target as Congress takes aim at the budget deficit. One silver lining may be that belt-tightening could also force compromise on long-overdue reforms.

But what can we learn from history?

Republican Victory, the Tea Party and U.S. Development Policy

The big news out of the U.S. midterm elections is the Republican victory and control of the House of Representatives. Thirty nine of the sixty new House Republicans align themselves with the Tea Party. One of the few things the pundits agree on is that there is no clear Tea Party foreign policy agenda, much less a unified view about whether and how to engage developing countries.

Introducing CGD’s New Rethinking U.S. Foreign Assistance Director: Connie Veillette

Starting Monday, CGD will have a new director of the Rethinking U.S. Foreign Assistance Initiative: Connie Veillette. Connie is well-known to many of our readers from her previous role on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee where she worked alongside Senator Lugar and his colleagues as the principal minority committee staff for foreign assistance, aid reform and food security issues.

Sen. Kerry Champions Development In Knock-Out Speech

Sen. John Kerry called for a grand new vision to put diplomacy and development alongside defense at the heart of America's foreign policy in a knock-out speech at the Brookings Institution last week. Sen. Kerry, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, spoke of a new generation of global challenges—ethnic tension, religious extremism, financial crises, climate change and poverty—that require a dramatic overhaul of U.S. foreign policy to protect our common security and prosperity.