July 15, 2021

Congressman Castro Applauds Committee Passage of Ensuring American Global Leadership and Engagement (EAGLE) Act

Key Castro Provisions are Included to Promote American Diplomacy, Development, and Leadership in the Info-Pacific

WASHINGTON — Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20), a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee (HFAC) and Chair of the Subcommittee on International Development, International Organizations and Global Corporate Social Impact, released the following statement after HFAC passed the Ensuring American Global Leadership and Engagement (EAGLE) Act. The legislation includes key provisions from Rep. Castro that will strengthen American diplomacy and leadership in the Indo-Pacific, including in response to the challenges presented by the People’s Republic of China.

“I have often said that the United States policy towards China should be to engage in competition when necessary, strengthening our sources of strength at home, and also define what it means for China to ‘cheat’ by strengthening international institutions, laws, and norms,” said Congressman Castro. “The EAGLE Act does just that, providing the United States government the tools and direction to protect our interests in the Indo-Pacific. As a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, I am proud to have secured these necessary provisions and will continue to advocate for United States leadership on these issues.”

Provisions authored and advocated for by Rep. Castro that are incorporated in the Ensuring American Global Leadership and Engagement Act include:

  • Establishing as U.S. policy that the United States ambassador to the United Nations serve as a member of the President’s cabinet.
  • Affirming that United States dues to multilateral organizations are paid in full in a timely fashion
  • Strengthening mechanisms to detail or transfer Federal Government employees to the serve at International Organizations, as many other countries do;
  • Includes key provisions of the Castro-Markey-Lieu-Merkley Saudi WMD Act (H.R. 2506) to counter the People’s Republic of China’s proliferation of ballistic missile and nuclear technology to the Middle East;

  • Strengthens the U.S. Development Finance Corporation by increasing its liability cap from $60 billion to $100 billion and requiring its equity investments to be treated as consistent with the Federal Credit Reform Act, significantly improving its ability to make investments to support international development goals;;

  • Includes the Indian Ocean Region Strategic Review Act (H.R. 3696) to define U.S. interests in the Indian Ocean region, strengthen U.S. engagement with allies and partners in this critical part of the Indo-Pacific;

  • Includes the bipartisan Castro-Tenney Young Southeast Asian Leadership Initiative (YSEALI) Act (H.R. 4213), to strengthen people-to-people engagement between the United States and the nations of Southeast Asia; 
  • Includes the bipartisan Castro-Merkley-Meijer-Rubio-Warren-Cornyn bill to establish the China Censorship Monitor and Action Group (H.R. 3695) to expose the People’s Republic of China’s efforts to exchange fair market access for coerced public silence, holding the Chinese government and private actors accountable for their actions

  • Extending key provisions the Asia Reassurance Initiative Act that support U.S. priorities in the Indo-Pacific and are set to expire in 2023 by three years to 2026 and expanding the authorization of appropriations from $1.5 billion a year to $2 billion a year;

  • Calling on the International Olympic Committee to rescind ‘Rule 50’ which prohibits political expression by athletes when competing in the Olympics and affirming the rights of athletes to criticize the governments hosting any athletic competition.

The legislation also includes several provisions that Castro directly advocated for inclusion in the bill or supported through legislative action, including: 

  • Establishing a Quad Intra-Parliamentary Working Group, to promote ties between legislators of the United States, Japan, Australia, and India key partners with shared values and interests in the Indo-Pacific;

  • Extending the statutory authorization of the Global Engagement Center, an innovative Department of State office that counters disinformation by U.S. adversaries, which is due to expire in 2024 by three years to 2027, consistent with earlier unsuccessful efforts by Representatives Castro and Gallagher to extend the authorization in the FY21 National Defense Authorization Act; and

These provisions secured by Rep. Castro in the EAGLE Act are part of the congressman’s efforts to strengthen the United States’ infrastructure for diplomacy and development, building on his efforts as chair of the House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on International Development, International Organizations, and Global Corporate Social Impact and as founding co-chairs of the U.S.-Japan Caucus and the Congressional Caucus on ASEAN.