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tv   U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Confirmation Hearing  CSPAN  June 19, 2019 10:29am-12:00pm EDT

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> good morning, everybody. >> we'll take you live now to the senate foreign relations committee which is holding a hearing this morning on the nomination of kelly craft to be ambassador to the united
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nations. we'll show you as much of this hearing as we can until the house comes back into session at noon eastern. mr. menendez: i find the staggering amount of time away from post troubling and an abdication of leadership. if confirmed, you would be serving alongside some of the most experienced, seasoned and sometimes ruthless diplomats from all over the world. we're confronting myriad challenges in the world today, including multiplying conflicts, climate change, nuclear proliferation that cut across borders, which the united states cannot meet alone. while the u.n. and its subsidiary bodies are far from perfect institution, they have the power to facilitate remarkable achievements and leverage partnerships. if you are confirmed, i hope you address the following priorities. first, we must actively seek so balance china's influence. this administration's pullback from the u.n. risks enabling china to fill the vacuum by ceding diplomatic ground. china is eager to undermine
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u.n. human rights mechanisms and impose china's authoritarian world view. second, the u.s. -- i should say the u.n. must be fair and appropriately condemn human rights abuses and atrocities and stop politically motivated resolutions. one of the persistent weaknesses of the united nations system has been the bias and ugly approach toward israel. you must use your voice to end and combat these efforts. third, the united states must pay our arears. the u.n. is in a financial crisis in part due to u.s. shortfalls. for peacekeeping alone, we are $776 million in arears. these arears have accrued in just the last three years from the u.s. paying only 25% of peacekeeping costs instead what have we actually owed, 28%. last week the state department issued its own report detailing that the u.s. refusal to pay its arears has, quote, this is the state department speaking,
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diminished our ability to pursue u.s. priorities rerks deuce u.s. ability to promote oversight and accountability at the u.n., reduce standing to promote the candidacy of qualified u.s. citizens to assume senior management roles at the u.n., and impaired the ability of peacekeeping missions to operate, closed quote. fourth, united states must stop seeking to restrict access to sexual and reproductive health and human rights that improve the lives of women, girls and communities around the world. most recently, the u.s. egregiously threatened to veto a u.n. security council resolution for survivors of gender-based violence over reference to survivors' access to sexual and reproductive health care. that is appalling. finally, the u.s. must work to shore up the u.n.'s humanitarian response system, which is under extraordinary stress. we must do so not merely because it is the right thing to do, but because it is profoundly in our national
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interest to do so. the united states shares the burden with less risk when we address devastating humanitarian crisises through the united nations. our national security is strengthened when we are at the table at the u.n. and the u.n. is more effective with american leadership and values on display. so i look forward to your testimony today on these pressing issues. >> thank you, senator. now we will turn to ambassador craft. welcome. thank you for being willing to undertake this important engagement on behalf of the people of the united states. the floor is yours. ms. craft: thank you. thank you for the opportunity to appear here today. it is the singular honor to sit before you as president trump's nominee to serve as u.s. ambassador to the united nations. a special word of thanks, of
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course, to my kentucky senators, leader mcconnell and senator paul, for their kind words, as well as their encouragement, wisdom and support throughout my tenure in ottawa. i would like to express my gratitude to president trump, vice president pence, secretary pompeo, ambassador lighthizer and mission canada for the trust they have shown me as we have worked together to strengthen our bonds with canada and the canadian people. i appear before you today excited at the prospect of representing the united states at the u.n., but also saddened at the thought of leaving my many superb colleagues and counterparts across the northern border. mr. chairman, i am blessed with the most loving and supporting family imaginable. my husband, joe, our family, ron, eliott, j.w. molly, ryan lauren, kyle, mia, stu, jane
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and wyatt. my siblings, mark and their spouses, elizabeth, my sister, mica, and her husband, bruce. and five of the shining stars, five out of 11 in our life, we have jake, kingsley, holland, lockland, windsor and our friend, fifi. when the president asked me to consider moving to new york to serve as our nation's permanent representative to the united nations, i turned to the people behind me to ask for their guidance and to god for his. if confirmed, i would assume this position knowing that just like the toronto raptors and the kentucky wildcats, i will have a very deep bench. i would also assume this position with clear-eyed humility. i have much to learn about the united nations, a fact i first encountered in 2007 when i served as the alternate delegate to the u.n. general sameably and saw firsthand the complexity of multilateral
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diplomacy at this unique institution. i learned then that making progress at the u.n. requires constant attention to relationships, a knack for knowing the bottom line, and the belief in incremental but determined steps forward. ultimately i would not have accepted the president's nomination for this position if i was not certain i was ready for the task at hand. like the president, i have had the honor to serve. i believe the united nations is a vital institution that is at its best when free nations jointly contribute to its missions around the world. i was born and raised on a working farm were all -- where all living things were valued and treated with kindness. we were that family with a few one-eyed cats and three-legged dogs. we treasured and we protected the land and all those who worked it and walked it.
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my parents instilled in me a respect for people of all means, occupations, origins and circumstances. if confirmed, those are the values that will animate my work at the u.n., as they have throughout my personal and my professional life. and if confirmed, i will carry with me the respect as i engage all of my 192 counterparts. i will also carry with me several key priorities i've already had the opportunity to discuss with many of you on the committee. most notably the united states must continue the drumbeat of reform at the u.n. of course, the issue of reform has been something of a mantra for members of both parties on this committee and for good reason. the u.n. system has grown quickly, its activities have expanded and its ambitions at times have gotten ahead of accountability. waste and overlap remain problems. conduct issues, including
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sexual exploitation, continue to surface. hiring practices are often too opaque and backroom deals for appointments and contracts continue. none of that is acceptable and my voice on these matters will be heard whenever and wherever these issues arise. the united nations needs greater transparency and u.s. taxpayers deserve it. reform makes the united nations stronger, not weaker. the second priority i will take to new york is a focus on expanding the pool of resources available to the u.n.'s humanitarian network. and pushing its agencies to maximize the impact of those resources on the ground. where needs are the greatest. there are numerous crises from sudan to yemen to syria, and there are new crises that we did not foresee a few years ago, such as the four million venezuelans that have fled
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eir country in search of safety and sustenance. the united states has long been the world leader in supporting humanitarian aid, spending more than $8 billion a year through usaid and international organizations such as unicef and the world food program. but i also believe other responsible nations can and must do more to contribute their fair share, and i will make this point very firm and frequently. again, the u.n. is stronger, not weaker, when more of its members are invested in the success of its most important work. finally, i'm a believer in the power of public-private partnerships to unlock opportunity and spur development. if confirmed, i will take new york a broad network of relationships i believe can fuel new partnerships and expand those with proven track records.
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among my areas of strong interest for displaced populations are strength being -- strengthening prenatal care services for women, imprombinging the quality of early childhood education, and increasing the attentive challenges to elder care. the numbers are colossal. the needs are urgent. and we have a moral and practical obligation to work with other countries to address these crises. while bolstering humanitarian efforts will be a top priority for me, there's another issue of global nature that i would like to briefly address. i understand that some members of this committee have raised questions about where i stand on climate change. and though i have spoken to many of you individually about this issue, i would like to repeat my thoughts here publicly. climate change needs to be addressed, as it poses real risk to our planet. human behavior has contributed to the changing climate. let there be no doubt.
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i will take this matter seriously and if confirmed i will be an advocate for all countries to do their part in addressing climate change. this does not mean, in my view, that the united states should empir -- imperil american jobs or our economy as a whole by assuming an outsized burden on behalf of the rest of the world . however, it does mean that we should promote the creativity and innovation that have made the united states a leader in tackling the challenges of our environment. and while safeguarding our nation's economic well-being. mr. chairman, members of the committee, i believe that the united states must maintain its central leadership role at the united nations as it should, and i say this for several reasons. first, when the u.n. performs, it advances key american objectives, including the promotion of peace and security. second, without u.s.
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leadership, our partners and allies would be vulnerable to bad actors at the u.n. this is particularly true in the case of israel. which is the subject of unrelenting bias and hostility in u.n. venues. the united states will never accept such bias and if confirmed i commit to seizing every opportunity to shine a light on this conduct, call it what it is, and demand that these outrageous practices finally come to an end. finally, i believe the united states must remain vigilant in constraining effort business our strategic competitors to gain influence at our expense. i speak in particular about russia and china, two nations united roaches to the states. if confirmed, i will miss no opportunity to draw attention to maligned influence at the u.n., to distinguish american leadership from the corrosive, underhanded conduct of those
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nations, and to reinforce the values, our values, that were central to the u.n.'s founding. mr. chairman, the united states has been met with many recent successes at the u.n., from historic sanctions against north korea to renewed boldness and speaking out against rogue actors. there are successes that i'm eager to build upon and i look forward to working with this committee and benefiting from its collective wisdom and experience. if given the honor to sit behind the namepleat that reads united states -- nameplay the that reads united states, you have -- nameplate, you -- that reads the united states, you i will have that an unwavering commitment to universal human rights and human freedom. thank you to all of you for
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welcoming me here today and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you, ambassador. certainly good words, well received. we hope that, as you take this position, that you will particularly follow through on the reform and cost cutting that is needed there. many, many people have talked about it, but little gets done. mr. richmond: i have confidence that -- mr. risch: i have confidence that you're up to the job. when you go there, i hope you'll take that message from this committee. with that, we're going to go to a round of five-minute questions, based upon the arrival and going back and forth between the minority and majority party. with that, i'll turn it over to senator menendez. mr. menendez: thank you. as i said to you in private and i have raised here in public, i have a concern about excessive absences from post. you gave me your commitment in private but for the record here, do you commit to
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providing complete records of all of the time you spent away from post, including cables approving your leave and your official calendars? ms. craft: yes, senator, i do commit to providing you with all the information necessary. men thank you very much. and i -- mr. menendez: thank you very much. and i appreciate the information you've provided but there are a number of discrepancies. from october 23 of 2017 to june 19 of 2019, we have that you were away more than 300 days away from the post. it's an extraordinary number absences. the red describes each day that you were away from post. that arch 21 to may 13 in short period of time, you were out 45 of 54 days from the post. now, there are trips listed as official travel. but some of those trips that you listed as official travel you right toed -- treated while
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being home in kentucky. and there is additional travel that you appear to have taken that is not reflected in the information you provided. for example, there are several instances where you posted social media meanings from places other than -- messages from places other than canada, although there is no record of you traveling. did you ever travel away from post without requesting approval? ms. craft: no, sir. we requested approval in advance of my travel and were in full compliance with my travel. mr. menendez: you always requested and always received approval for your travel? ms. craft: yes, sir. mr. menendez: so there may be explanations for all of these but the bottom line is without the full recorded we can't evaluate. i would urge you as well as the state department to provide these records so we can move forward with your nomination. let me ask you this. lay out briefly for me the most pressing issues the united nations faces, as well as areas
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where you believe the united states should leverage the united nations in pursuit of our foreign policy priorities. ms. craft: thank you, senator, for that question. and thank you for this conversation that we were able to have yesterday afternoon. i see pressing issues as any issue that involves innocent people throughout the u.n. system, throughout the world, that are being abused, that are having human rights abuses. i think it's very important that who would have ever thought that today we'd have so many crises in venezuela, in yemen, in syria, and it's so important that we look after our human rights issues. because then that in turn is going to be humanitarian issues. so in my opinion, i look at every issue when it involves an innocent civilian as a crises. mr. menendez: i appreciate your response in terms of
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humanitarian issues. and i would share those with you. but, i would expect someone who is a nominee to be the u.n. bam does -- ambassador in response to that question to talk about, for example, the challenges of north korea aggression and nuclear proliferation. the challenges in libya, destabilized libya. the challenges of china's growing influence and ongoing threats from iran. the challenges of venezuela. those are minimally some of the hot spots in the world right now. so, when i ask about the most pressing issues, and i certainly embrace the humanitarian issues, but these are the types of issues you'll be called upon as the united states ambassador at the u.n. to be dealing with. let me ask you this. what u.n. functions would be describe as being of the greatest value to the united states? ms. craft: senator, thank you. i believe that the security council is going to be providing the greatest
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assistance to the u.s. in calling out bad actors and in highlighting anyone that demonstrates anti-israel bias. or anti-semitism. and i also reiterate that the security council's going to be an area that china and russia can actually call themselves out by allowing the world to see how they do not assist us in human rights abuses. and especially in calling out corrosive behavior as we have in iran. it is a moment that we can use to highlight bad actors, whether it be iran, the houthi rebels in yemen, russia, china, the way they treat the uighurs. we have so many crises that the security council, it's very important that we be able to use them in sustaining -- establishing sanctions and also in making certain that we tackle human rights abuses
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every day. mr. menendez: one follow-up question. you mentioned the security council, certainly is an essential element of the u.n. there's a whole host of other functions the u.n. has. i would commend to your attention. but russia. the president seeks to develop a greater personal relationship with mr. putin and russia. how will you seek to avail yourself of that as it relates to russia and the security council? ms. craft: thank you, senator. i'm not going there to be russia's friend. they're not our friend. they are under-- they undermine us at every opportunity that they have. and you better believe i will keep a clear eye on them and understanding where we can work together, whether it's north korea, or other areas that we need to call them out on. we have to be very protective of ukraine, we have to understand that they are propping up the assad regime. and also their human rights
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abuses. our country has applied more sanctions in this administration than has ever been applied on russia and i will continue to hold them accountable. we will continue to apply maximum pressure. and if confirmed i will promise you that we will be shining a light on russia. mr. menendez: thank you very much. mr. risch: thank you. senator paul, we have been anxiously awaiting your arrival. we didn't wait for you. mr. paul: i'll just wait until my return and make my remarks with my question. sorry i'm late. i was voting with another committee. mr. risch: we understand that. thank you. enator isakson, you're up. mr. isakson: thank you very much, chairman risch. i appreciate the opportunity. welcome, kelly. we're glad to have you. i shouldn't say kely. i should be very formal but i know this lady very well. she is a great nominee. she's a great individual and someone i cherish my relationship with her very much.
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first of all, mr. chairman, to you and the ranking member, she has been very good in her job as a ambassador to canada. she's also looking out for the best interests of the united states and best things the united states of america stands for. i was listening to her testimony from a phone booth because i have an emergency going on back home. she's very much aware of the anti-semitism problems we have in europe and around the world. she was forceful in her remarks she made about that and she knows how to use her voice and her position as an advocate for the right thing to do. she is someone who when asked what to do will always do the right thing. and i think that's the kind of person you're looking for in this job. i was one two of people that nominated samantha power when barack obama nominated her ambassador. i did it right here because samantha power had and i think exhibited in her term there the same type of qualities this lady has. if you got that kind of
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continuation of representation in the united states, with -- united nations, which is a unique organization to start with, you need to take advantage of that experience and that ability. i didn't hear -- i'm probably doing something wrong in the testimony and i apologize for this. there's a chart over there, a lot of red squares on it. would you tell me what that is behind mr. cardin. mr. risch: those are absences from post. mr. issa: what kind of absences -- mr. isakson: what kind of absences? mr. risch: that's what we're trying to determine. mr. isakson: i don't know where she was but it was in the best interests of the united states. you were doing trade things, right? ms. craft: yes. when president trump first asked me to be the ambassador canada, he made it very clear as we discussed in your office yesterday, that this was a real job. that we were going to be renegotiating the most important trade partnership in the world with our number one trading partner, canada. little did i know that i would be living out of a suitcase
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most of the time during the trade negotiations. whether it was in montreal and then moved to washington, i was part of ambassador lighthizer's negotiation team and went back nd forth weekly from d.c. to ottawa. sometimes i would be returning to ottawa on a wednesday and then on wednesday evening be called back to d.c.. i took the oath of office understanding that this job was 24/7 and i intended to make certain that i was going to be representing the american people at the table for the nafta negotiations. it was very important to robert lighthizer as he is our ustr trade americaer -- negotiator, that he have a team that was looking after the best interest of not only our country, but of the relationship that we have with our number one trade partner. mr. isakson: everything i understand about, that you did an outstanding job doing that and everybody appreciates what
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you did. do you think a u.n. ambassador is any busier than a united states senator? >> be careful. mr. isakson: it's not a trick question. [laughter] ms. craft: i think i'm only going to be as successful as the relationships i have with all of you busy gentlemen and women. so i'm looking forward to learning more about your priorities so that i can be just as busy. mr. isakson: i want all the members to think about this on the question of absences. if you look at my record the last three weeks, i've been in dag tad, -- baghdad iverbings been if dough, what i've been in abu dhabi, i've been in marietta, georgia, i went to i funeral of dick lugar and forgot the last place i went. where? france. that's correct. with mr. cardin. [laughter] a small little celebration of a great war we won. we always celebrate that victory. my point is, we go a lot of
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places too. my job is here. and it's my duty station. but my duty to my duty station and to my country is to be wherever the jobs requirements takes me. just because your job requirements took you somewhere that wasn't in your office, it doesn't mean you weren't doing your job. show me someone that's always sitting in my office and i will show you someone who isn't doing much. i want to bring a that up. we didn't practice that -- bring that up. we didn't practice that. but i wanted to bring that up. ms. craft: may i add, while i was not in my chair in my office, i have a staff of foreign service officers that are second to none. filth very confident with my -- not being in my office because i had people there running the mission as we discussed every day and i must brag on the foreign service officers. because without them, the mission, even before i arrived, the mission would have not been run so smoothly. mr. isakson: two things. i took too much time and i
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apologize. i'd like unanimous consent that the letter be the united states ambassador can dab submitted for the record. -- can be submitted for the record. thank you very much. sorry i went off track a little bit. but i think it's very important when we have somebody representing us in the united states, they be an engaged person who believes in the things we believe in as an american and will work hard. i'm proud to support you. mr. cardoza: thank you. -- mr. cardenas: thank you. thank you for your -- mr. cardin: thank you. thank you for your willing tons erve your country. i want to make sure we have a person who is an advocate for the u.n.
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we have problems with the u.n. but it serves an important function. our ambassador, our representative to the u.n., need to be an advocate to make the united states as effective as we possibly can with u.s. influence. so, i want to talk about one issue first and that is the human rights council. i strongly have disagreed with actions in the human rights council. in fact, senator portman and i have filed legislation dealing with action in the human rights council. but the question is whether we participate or don't participate as a member of the human rights council. and there is a concern that if we're not at the table, countries such as china or russia get a much larger audience than if we were there participating. so i want to get your view as to whether you think it is right for us to walk away from debates in which we cannot win or we're better off staying there and making our points and
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doing best we can? ms. craft: thank you, senator, and thank you for our meeting the other day, especially talking about the goals of the u.n. whether or not we are in the room with the human rights council or a member is really not as important as the ability , as the u.s.-u.n. ambassador to use the security council as a platform to call out these countries on human rights abuses. if confirmed, i will use the security council as a platform and also understanding that it is not acceptable for the human rights council to constantly undermine israel, to could be stantly show anti-israel bias and anti-semitism. that is not -- mr. cardin: i agree with you on that. i'm not sure the security council has the effective way to counter what the human rights council does. the actions, of course, there are subject to consensus with the p-5, so if we don't have
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the permanent councilmembers all in agreement, we can't get action on the security council. so i'm not sure that is a substitute. i think using security council is critically important, but i urge your understanding of recognizing we're going to be dealing with nations that don't agree with you in forums sometimes that we cannot control the outcome. should we participate or walk away? ms. craft: senator, there are ms. craft: senator, there are members of the human rights council that are committing these horrible human rights abuses. senator cardin: no disagreement from me on that. ms. craft: it's appalling that we have members of the council that are supposed to be holding accountable. senator cardin: i'll get into a second subject. you gave, i thought, views that i strongly agree with in regards to climate change. and then you said you don't want to assume an outsized burden be on behalf of the rest of the world. so i want to drill down on that
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for one moment, because the united states is party to the 1992 u.n. framework convention on climate change. that's the climate change that is subject right now to discussion by the white house. in that convention, it's basically a convention to come together as a global community to deal with climate issues. there's no specific commitments in the convention itself. then, 2015 in paris, there was agreement reached between 195 now signators that has voluntary compliance. there is no enforcement of that. so where are you -- are you concerned by the actions by the united nations that the united states is assuming an overburden share or is this a concern you have in the work you'll be doing at the united nations to make sure that it's a fair burden shared globally? ms. craft: thank you, senator. obviously we both agree that
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burden sharing is very important in the u.n. we will always, the u.s. will always be a leader -- senator cardin: i have a limited amount of time. i don't want to be rude. i'd like to get your view whether we should be working with the global community on climate issues? ms. craft: we feel being a member of the paris climate agreement doesn't -- we don't need to be a member in order to show leadership. you know, while we committed very robustly in our commitment to the paris climate agreement from a financial standpoint, we expected other countries to step up. and while they did commit, they really were not serious. and i feel very strongly, if confirmed, that climate change must be addressed, that we need to balance american economy with the environment and we need to really stress to other people the -- the innovation and technology to be used as tools to mitigate climate change. if confirmed, i will be aned a very coit in addressing climate change. senator cardin: we lead by what
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we do in america. but we also lead by engaging other countries because we cannot deal with the issues of climate change without actions globally, particularly by the major emitters. do you support engaging the global community to deal with climate change? and if paris was not right what is right? ms. craft: thank you, senator. i absolutely agree with you. engage everyone in this conversation. if you think about while we are committing on a robust manner and other people are not serious, we have underdeveloped countries that are being taken advantage of by china with their technology and innovation that is not for sustainability. it's for ownership. and while the u.s. is committing and other people are out there committing to own underdeveloped nations, we need to be using our technology and our innovations to show sustainability in underdeveloped countries and
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that is what we do really well. senator cardin: thank you, mr. chairman. senator risch: thank you, senator. senator rubio. senator rubio: senator. thank you, ambassador craft. thank you for being here. i want to close the loop on the travel question. the state department has rules for travel, correct? ms. craft: yes, senator, they do senator rubio: every trip you have taken, i don't know if it's the red or white, every single one of your trips were approved before you took them by the state department? ms. craft: yes. they were preapproved before travel. senator rubio: every one of your trips that you took in all of your travel complies with every single guideline the state department has in place for travel? ms. craft: yes, senator. senator rubio: of all the trips that you took, how many did you cover from your personal fund? ms. craft: we assumed all responsibility for expenses and travel-related expenses for all of our trips, whether it be diplomatic or personal. senator rubio: you personally paid for even official business trips? ms. craft: yes, we did, all travel expenses. senator rubio: so it's fair to
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say you saved the taxpayers money? ms. craft: yes, we did. senator rubio: can you be at two places at once? ms. craft: i certainly tried. that's why we have cell phones. senator rubio: the reason i ask this. in your time in post in canada, what would you say was the top issue between the u.s. and canada? my guess would be it would be the trade agreement negotiations. s. craft: senator rubio, the nafta, renegotiating nafta to where we have the usmca, i am still the ambassador to canada and will be with prime minister trudeau tomorrow. it is very important. we had moments of doubt and that is why it was imperative that ambassador mcnoten and myself be present, whether it be in canada for the meetings or in washington. and i was not going to let this country down, nor ambassador lighthizer and the president. senator rubio: a significant
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number of these trips up on that board involve negotiations on usmca that occurred within the united states. ms. craft: yes. the majority of the negotiations occurred in washington at ustr. senator rubio: did the white house ever deploy you to events around the country to promote usmca? ms. craft: the state department would often suggest whether it be a northern governor's and northern premiere meeting or different meetings with governors in order to really stress the importance of our trade with each state because each state obviously canada, i think 33 of them is the number one trading partner. senator rubio: the point is the state department asked you and suggest you attend certain events within the united states to promote a top priority of the administration which is the usmca negotiations and agreement? ms. craft: that is correct. actually, i received a lot of invitations and my office would have to make, you know, difficult decisions because i couldn't be two or three places
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at once and they would have to make the decision. being in washington was my number one priority. if that did not interfere with the trip that will be promoting nafta, ustr -- usmca, then i would most certainly travel. senator rubio: bottom line, it was not possible for you to be both in those negotiations for usmca and also at some ceremonial event at a third country embassy at the same time? you had to make a choice and you prioritized the top priority of this administration with regards to our relationship with canada? ms. craft: yes, senator. talking about attending some of the other events, it's important whether i was present or obviously if i was not i could not attend, but it's really important to include your team at your mission. i have 400 members, 400 incredible members at mission ottawa. it's important for them to have that exposure and to be able to attend. on many occasions they would actually ask if they could
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attend national days or other holiday events throughout ottawa at the different missions. senator rubio: i don't mean to diminish the importance of these events where they socialize and diplomatic corps. if forced to choose having you here, having you focus and hope land a trade negotiation with them or having you atind this week's cocktail party at some embassy which is important events. i know diplomats need to do that. they would prioritize the trade deal is my guess? ms. craft: this is really not a time to socialize. it's a time to work. senator rubio: what have you done in your capacity as ambassador to canada to advance the president's policy towards venezuela? ms. craft: thank you, senator. i know this is very important to you. who would have ever thought we have four million refugees in venezuela? it is a real importance with canada, also, with the lima
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group. they were gracious enough. i was able to attend the lima roup plus one in ottawa. viera blanco, did not have an embassy, because the maduro government -- so we arranged the meetings to be at my residence so we can understand the latin american countries and the hardships and taking on refugees such as colombia taking in one million refugees. you know, they have humanitarian issues within their own country. and i think -- i thought it was very important to allow, you know, a place that the ambassador designee could be heard and he was very helpful in answering questions and taking back to the interim president juan guaido, the concerns of the other countries. you know, it is just so important. there is no other option than
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for maduro to leave. it's just really important for us as americans to be, you know, demonstrating the fact that we do care and that we are engaged. senator risch: senator coons. coons coons thank you, mr. -- senator coons: thank you, mr. chairman. madam ambassador, we do have three hearings going on at the same time on three different committees on which i serve. so i apologize for being out of breath. i literally ran upstairs from an appropriations hearing where we are marking up and advancing i think an important bipartisan amendment now. so my apologies. thank you for being here. congratulations on your nomination and for the work you've done representing us in ottawa. we had the opportunity to talk about some of the concerns other snoors have raised today. our role in the united nations, both in its founding, in
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leading it, and in giving it direction, as it is a multilateral entity that helps the world come together to confront the most pressing global challenges is of significant interest and concern to me. the trump administration has demonstrated related pee across a number of -- repeatedly across a number of engagements unilateral actions and bilateral relationships. if confirmed you would be stepping in the most visible and most important role, i think, our government has in a multilateral institution literally designed to built and largely funded by the united states. at a time when china is asserting its role in multilateral institutions, at least in what they say and to a larger extent what they do, as we discussed the first time i ever met a chinese flag ranked officer was in a peacekeeping mission in sudan.
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given china is seeking to fill the vacancy that i would argue or withdraw from a number of institutions and organizations are creating, in your view, do decreases in u.s. contributions to the u.n. and our withdrawal from u.n. bodies, such as senator cardin asked you about we can push back against china's expanding influence and in particular to effectively question and challenge china's human rights violations? ms. craft: thank you, senator. thank you for the opportunity for us to talk about our daughters and the importance of -- dollars and the importance of doing the best you can. i understand the critics when they say we've kind of lost the way as why the values that the u.n. was founded upon. i think it's very important to talk about the fact we were founded with equality, peace and security, making certain we take care of social, economic, all issues within -- on the globe, and human rights. that's an issue where we need
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to be very careful in shining a light on china. the way they treat the uighurs. just because they have become the second largest donor, which obviously is a reflection of their economy at the u.n., we need to be even more cautious and more diligent in the relationship that if confirmed that i will build with other member states in making certain they understand that, yes, china is participating in sharing in this burden, as we will always be the leader in contributing to the u.n. and we'll always take the leadership role. however, with china, as you well know, they have a motive and that is better leverage and taking advantage of some of these underdeveloped countries through the u.n. system. senator coons: my hope, madam ambassador, is your voice will be loud and clear and consistent in contributing to the u.n., not just our financial contributions, but our voice in advocating for
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human rights on a bipartisan basis across a number of administrations. the u.n. has been a place where we have pushed back against criticisms and questioning and challenges of actions of key allies and pushed forward on concerns that aren't raised anywhere else nor addressed anywhere else. it's important to strike the right balance. i am particularly concerned about what seems to be a withdrawal from a long standing bipartisan commitment to a two-state solution. can you tell me about your view of a two-state solution and the central role that the u.n. can and should continue to play in advocating for that as the path forward in the middle east? ms. craft: senator, i am going to be -- if confirmed, i will support the president's vision for peace and security in the region. this is why it's so important every time any member state or anyone for that matter shows any anti-israel bias or anti-semitism that not only do we call them out but we have to
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explain this is slowing the process for peace -- senator coons: i am going to interrupt. do you know whether the president's view includes a two-state solution? i don't. ms. craft: senator, i have not been part of the middle east peace process. if confirmed, i will tell you there is no stronger friend than kelly craft and the united states for israel. and no stronger person to promote israel in normalizing themselves in the system. senator coons: i have two questions. you may want to respond in writing or some other way. i want to respect the time concerns we have here. first, you know, being an ambassador is a full-time hands on job, as i'm sure has been discussed while i have been at the other hearing. your representation that a lot of your travel out of ottawa has been to advance the usmca. if adequately documented and supported, i'm willing to take it face value, but i am concerned about issues that
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have been raised about your engagement and attendance in ottawa. new york is even harder. there's even more nations. there's even more work. there's more direct and i hope you can persuade me you will be fully and directly engaged and provide the background that would support that. last, ebola has broken out now in uganda. i am concerned while there is many other pressing issues, and i know i am detaining some of my colleagues in questioning, i would welcome how you view -- this is another opportunity for the administration to lead in a multilateral response and a global response rather than a unilateral response. peace in the middle east, ebola, human rights, and our role overall in the u.n., i need to hear from you that you understand how we built and sustain this institution. thank you, madam ambassador. senator risch: did you want those for the record, senator coons? senator coons: yes. ms. craft: thank you, senator
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coons. senator risch: thank you. senator cruz. senator cruz: thank you, mr. chairman. ambassador craft, welcome. congratulations on this nomination. thank you for your distinguished service to our nation serving today as ambassador to canada. and i am confident in this new post that you will do an exemplary job. and indeed, i have a word of encouragement. in it is interesting, the principal criticism, as manifested on this colorful chart that the committee has put up, the principal criticism it seems leveled against you is that you have traveled and worked too hard in your current post. which i find not terribly persuasive criticism and pretty strong indication that the end result of this is going to be your confirmation. but let's dive into this criticism a little bit more because i don't think it
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withstands even the barest of cute designee. as i understand some of the travel represented up on that chart included travel to montreal, is that correct? ms. craft: yes, sir. senator cruz: and montreal is in canada? ms. craft: yes. senator cruz: it included travel to calgary, is that correct? ms. craft: yes. senator cruz: calgary is in canada? ms. craft: absolutely. senator cruz: i assume some included travel to toronto, is that right? ms. craft: yes. senator cruz: so the last i checked, you were not the ambassador to ottawa. you were the ambassador to canada, is that right? ms. craft: the ambassador representing the united states in canada. senator cruz: indeed. so the beginning argument, if you're traveling around the nation that you are appointed ambassador to -- ambassador to and if you were meeting with business leaders, government leaders, community leaders in those towns it's somehow a dir election of duty, i would --
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dereliction of duty, i would say you were poor if you went to ottawa, stayed indoors in your office, that would be opposite what one wants an ambassador to do. as i understand it, a significant portion of that travel also includes travel to washington, d.c. to participate in strategy and negotiations for the usmca, is that right? ms. craft: yes, it is. senator cruz: is there any policy issue right now between the united states and canada that is more pressing, that is more urgent, that is a higher priority than ensuring the strong and continued economic friendship, relationship, and trade between the united states and canada? ms. craft: there is no other issue. it's so important the prime minister is coming in today to further discuss usmca and how he can help implement and ratify us plmbings ca through his par -- usmca through his
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parliament and at the same time through our congress. senator cruz: and i guess, if you were not a very good ambassador, they might well have left you in ottawa. they might have said, we are doing important stuff between the u.s. and canada, but, you know, our ambassador is not up to snuff so you stay up there the office and we'll do the mete of the negotiations. ms. craft: i take this very serious. it's a 24/7 job, and every state in the u.s. relies upon our trade partnership with canada. and if i needed to be in a state, speak to a governor, legislator or mayor, everyone's affected by this usmca. and it was vitally important. senator cruz: well, i will say you and i have known each other a long time. we are friends. i will say anyone that knows you knows that you are tenacious, you are hardworking, you do not know how to do a
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task halfway, that that is simply not in you to do a task halfway but rather if given a task, you are going to dive in with both feet and with all the energy and passion you have. that is how you have done the job as ambassador to canada. i have every confidence that's how you'll do as ambassador to the u.n. as well. let's take a moment and talk about just how important the job of ambassador to canada is. canada is one of our most important global allies. they are a member of five i's which means they are one of most important intelligence partners. u.s. defense arrangements with canada are more extensive than any other country. we have more than 800 agreements on cooperation across national security. they're one of nine countries that have participated in the u.s.-led f-35 program. and you have been the point person for the past year and a half for u.s. policy with
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canada. can you describe briefly how you approach that job and what you did to strengthen the friendship and relationship between the united states and canada? ms. craft: thank you, senator. as you well know, it's vitally important to have this relationship before you go into negotiating. and ambassador mcnotten was extremely important in including this friendship and this initial respect. if you don't have respect, then when you're sitting at the table and disagree, then you won't come back and it will not be productive. you know, we had several issues as far as five i's meetings especially when it came to china and the use of 5-g technology. i am continuing to stress canada to pay their 2% for nato. so maybe i can say that publicly one more time. and also just the fact that usmca was so important to all.
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everywhere i go, whether it's oronto, calgary, montreal, quebec, they would ask me about nafta and usmca -- at the time it was nafta -- and how important it was to them, to their families, to their economy, their community that we, the united states, and canada has a very healthy trade agreement. so i was available 24/7, as i will be, if confirmed as ambassador to the united nations. senator cruz: thank you, ambassador. senator risch: thank you very much, senator cruz. appreciate your unpaid aversement for them spending their 2%. we all tried that. the best person i have seen is president of the united states. he's done a good job getting their attention, every's attention. senator shaheen.
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senator shaheen: thank you for considering on taking on this difficult position. i appreciated the opportunity to meet with you yesterday and our conversation and your passionate support for the u.n. system. i think that's absolutely critical to anyone who serves as ambassador to the u.n. i also appreciated the opportunity to talk with you about the united nations population fund or unfpa, because i believe it plays a vitally important role in providing health services to vulnerable women, to men, and to children in areas of conflict, poverty, or instability. in venezuela, for example, unfpa provides hospitals with desperately needed supplies and training to the few dollars that remain on how to deliver babies. and as we discussed, this work is at risk because of a determination that unfpa partners with programs in china that promote coercive
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population policies. i very much appreciated your commitment to look into these reports. i have asked multiple representatives from usaid to the state department about these reports and i have seen nowhere any evidence that any partnership exists between unfpa and supporting programs in china. so that our -- that require abortions for women. so i very much appreciated your commitment to look into those reports. i would urge you, also, to meet with the executive director of unfpa. the united states sits on their executive board. they approve unfpa's countries programs. i hope, if confirmed, you will agree to meet with the executive director. is that a yes? ms. craft: absolutely. thank you. senator shaheen: thank you. i also appreciated your agreeing to look into the disturbing reports last summer
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that the u.s. sought to block a resolution recognizing the importance of breast-feeding at the may, 2018, world health assembly. unfortunately, as we discuss, this is not the only concerning instance of attacks by the u.s. mission to the u.n. on women's health. i would urge you to ensure if you are confirmed, the u.s. mission to the u.n. that you will lead, reassert its role as the leading proponent of women of their rights and of their health around the world. is that something you believe is important for the ambassador from the united states to do? ms. craft: absolutely. and as we discussed, you know, both of us being mothers of daughters and as you can see, beautiful granddaughters, it is so important that the -- that the u.s. takes a lead in the organizations that promote the health and well-being of maternal and child health and voluntary family planning. i can give you my word that i
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will do everything in my power to continue that support through organizations, such as usaid, the world food program, world health program, unicef. we have so many wonderful organizations that are built upon success that are allowing women and children to be healthy because, as you know, and we discussed, women and children are what keep our communities thriving. and without them, we will lose -- we will actually lose the economy in those communities. thank you for sharing yesterday and i'm looking forward, if confirmed, to working very closely with you on women's issues. senator shaheen: thank you very much for that commitment. as we know, it has been the policy of the united states to empower women around the world, and that's good, not just because it's the right thing to do, but improve stability around the world, that women give back more to their families, more to their communities and more to their countries. and contribute to the stability
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of communities. and in that regard, this committee and this congress passed and the bill was signed into law in 2017, the women peace and security act, which is a commitment to ensure that women are part of the negotiating process in conflict areas. when peace is being negotiated. the administration just last week put forward a strategy to implement the women, peace, and security act. i think it's very important. if confirmed, can you commit to furthering this effort at the u.n., including through bodies such as u.n. women that promote the implementation of the principles of women, peace, and security? ms. craft: yes, senator shaheen. i commit i will be an advocate for women's issues and making certain that we really highlight women and children and young girls so that they, too, can be strong women and be leaders in their communities and their countries and have
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the opportunity, as i have, to be -- if confirmed -- the u.s. u.n. ambassador. senator shaheen: thank you. senator risch: thank you, senator shaheen. senator paul. senator paul: congratulations on your nomination. sorry i was a bit late. i was trying to promote my own bill on not having a government shutdown. kentuckians are really excited about your nomination. as you know i supported you to be ambassador to canada and will support you to be ambassador to the u.n. but i did want to explore app couple of questions that i think are important with regard to the middle east. do you agree with president trump that the iraq war was a giant geopolitical mistake? ms. craft: senator paul, as we had this discussion in your office and you know i understand that president trump has made the statement he believes the iraq war was a mistake. if confirmed, i will be following the president's
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policies. senator paul: to do you agree with the president? ms. craft: i am not going to second guess the administration, the bush administration, but i do acknowledge that president trump has made the statement that he disagrees with our -- senator paul: the reason it's an important question, it's not about history. it's not about something that happened that has no influence over what happens now. it instructs, i think, dozens and dozens of different conflicts around the world. so, for example, do you think that the regime change in libya has been to the world's advantage or to our advantage? ms. craft: you know, i think the regime change has been very important, especially, because we do have different situations going on at the moment. it's really important we have a strong presence there. senator paul: do you think the world is better off with the regime change and with the current situation in libya? ms. craft: well, we really haven't had a regime change as of yet. senator paul: we had a regime
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with qaddafi. we were part of toppling qaddafi. some would say, including me, we're worse off. the place is very i could ottic. it's been rife with terrorist camps. we have now competing factions. we are giving arms to qatar. qatar is giving to one side of the war and we support the other side of the war. we used to support the u.n. sanctioned government. now we support, you know, some other generals and it's like, no, to me it sounds like an unmitigated disaster there. and the reason i mention this is, this is what happened in iraq. we toppled a strong man who wasn't going to get any human rights awards but he also had stability and we replaced it with chaos. we now have iraq that is more closely aligned with iran. iran is stronger because of the geopolitical balance is tipped in favor of iraq with hussein gone. yeah, i think the iraq war
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still instructs us whether libya was a good idea. we were part of libya as well. this wasn't this president. that was the last president. there will be questions that come before you whether regime change in the middle east is our business and whether or not it has been to our advantage. i guess the question really is going back to libya. do you think regime change has been to our advantage? ms. craft: you know, i believe what is really important is that we show strength, we show deterrence. i mean, we have a situation in iran with the most corrosive behavior. we have seen no change in their behavior. you're speaking about iraq. you know, they are trying to take iraq and make it into a client state. we have a special political mission there. senator paul: if the president was here he would respond. yeah, iraq is opened to that because iraq's shiia majority now rules the place because we toppled hussein. so, i mean, we created the opportunity where iraq is aligning themselves with iran.
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it's iraq having great sympathy for iran. and so we just have to think these things through because all throughout the middle east it's been run by iron fisted men and no diplomats, no democrats, no people who believe in constitutional republicans, no jeffersonians, but they have stability. when they toppled we have instability. in syria, hundreds of thousands of people fled and hundreds of thousands of people died if we got rid of this dictator assad. the point i'd like to leave you with, the president feels the iraq war is a mistake. he probably said it 200 times or more. it instructs what we think about the other wars. i hope you will take that to heart because really, whether or not we get involved in the middle eastern country, and the only other thing i would say about the iran situation is realize that for as much of the problems we have with iran, the
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stated problems, i think i got as many or more with saudi arabia. they chopped up a dissident with a bone saw. you know, we continue to fuel an arms race that is saudi arabia hitted against iran. who spreads more jihadism and hatred of christians and jews and hindus? saudis by far. all i ask, it's a complicated world. i don't have all the answers. but realize in the middle east that there have been a lot of unintended consequences to our involvement. thanks. senator risch: senator markey. senator markey: thank you, mr. chairman. madam ambassador -- by the way, thank you for the visit in my office. i sent you a letter on may 3 along with senators merkley and whitehouse asking about your family's nearly $1 billion coal investments and how they might conflict with any climate change discussions that you would have a potential role in
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at the united nations. i did receive a response. it was at 9:59 a.m. this morning. i would ask, mr. chairman, if i can include the questions and the answers in the record. senator risch: it will be included. senator markey: thank you. but your responses actually don't go to the question, which is at the heart of the issue which is whether or not there is a conflict. from my perspective, i think it's important for the american people to know that those who are performing their duties can do so in a way that doesn't have that kind of a conflict. so i guess my first question to you is, do you believe your family's coal assets would cause a reasonable person to question your impartiality in matters related to the paris agreement, that is the united nations framework convention on climate change, or any other
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climate issue which is being considered at the united nations? ms. craft: thank you, senator. thank you for this exact conversation in your office and for the opportunity to have that discussion with you one-on-one. as you know, as i stated, we work -- my husband and i worked very closely with the office of government ethics, and as we did in 2017, we take this agreement very seriously and we were in full compliance. we have also, again, worked very closely with the office of government ethics developing the 2019 ethics agreements and our commitment to abide by each part of this ethics agreement, which we will do. and i give you my word that wherever there is any doubt in my mind as i often did with my 2000 agreement, i will be calling upon the legal counsel provided by the state department. senator markey: i am asking
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you, though, not your legal counsel. will you recuse yourself from any fossil fuel-related discussions in terms of their impact on climate change in your tenure at the united nations? ms. craft: senator, as we discussed, where there is the issue of coal and/or fossil fuels, i will recuse myself in meetings through the u.n. i understand that you -- senator markey: you will recuse yourself? ms. craft: i understand if confirmed this is a top priority. climate change is a of top priority at the united nations. with our ethics agreement, we have made a commitment, and i will make a commitment to you that i will recuse myself. i have a team at usun -- senator markey: you will recuse yourself from any matter that relates to fossil fuels at the u.n.? ms. craft: when there is coal -- we are waiting on clarity about fossil fuels with
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conversation within our ethics agreement. we asked for clarity on this. i will give you my commitment that where coal is part of the conversation within climate change at the u.n., i will recuse myself and feel very confident the team at the u.s. u.n., the experts that have been working on the climate change issues, specifically fossil fuels and coal, that i feel very confident they will be able to take my place. senator markey: does your family have oil and gas interests as well? ms. craft: i am not aware. i do not know what our interests. senator markey: if that's the case will you recuse from those areas as well? ms. craft: if our ethics agreements called for me to recuse myself, absolutely. i will be in full compliance. i give you my word. with our ethics agreement. senator markey: as you know, the united nations at the end of 20 18 concluded that climate change is now an existential threat to the planet. and our own scientists, 13 federal agencies concluded at the end of 2018, with business as usual, you the planet will
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warm by nine degrees fahrenheit by the end of this century. and our oceans could rise by 11 feet. this is clearly a very important issue. at the heart of it, the scientists believe is the role that fossil fuels and human activity are playing in it. do you think the united states can effectively steer the debate on climate change if we're the only country that's withdrawn from the paris agreement? what role could you play as a business example, a business woman if you withdrew from the board in terms of influencing the decisions of that board? doesn't that put you in a very awkward position? ms. craft: senator, no. we withdrew from the paris agreement because we feel like we don't have to be part of an agreement to be leaders. mean, we are already seeing a difference between 2005 and 2017, we've had 14% reduction
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in emissions. we have the best and the brightest in innovations and technology, as you and i discussed. i understand this san issue that needs to be addressed. i also understand that fossil fuels have played you a part in climate change. and if confirmed -- senator markey: do you agree with the u.s. scientists that it's largely because of fossil fuels and human activity? that's just in november, 2018, and it's every federal agency. ms. craft: i acknowledge there is a vast amount of science regarding climate change and the tools and the role that humans have played in climate change. senator risch: senator. >> thank you, ambassador craft for being here and for considering this very important responsibility. i begin, mr. chairman, by acknowledging a very personal
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bias here which have kelly and i are long-term friends. also, with her husband. senator cruz indicated she's tenacious and hardworking. i'd add relentless and has great power over people. as evidence by the fact her husband has been sitting there without moving for a long, long time. i have never seen joe craft sit in one place for so long. senator romney: and so uncomfortably as he's having to do today. i appreciate the service -- ms. craft: i may have to ask for a ride home after this. if anyone can offer me a ride after climate change. senator romney: i'd also note your public service is greatly valued and appreciated. and i'd also note your service in the private sector is very much appreciated. i think sometimes we in government assume we are the ones that are helping the public and doing what's right for the country. i would note every dollar we
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have to spend is a good or service produced in the private sector and i very much appreciate the work you have carried out in the private sector to provide employment to people and to provide the positive benefits to our country. i'd also note with regards to your family's involvement in investment in coal, coal happens to represent 70% of the power in my home state of utah. i am very anxious to find ways to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, but i would note that coal will be for many decades a major source of power in our country and other countries around the world and appreciate those facilities that provide coal in a clean and effective way, providing good jobs to our citizens and power that very much provides for our economy and the economies around the world. turning to a couple of questions relating to your appointment.
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and that is with regards to your priorities at the united nations. there are many, many things going on in the world right now. i don't know whether you have given thought to things you would consider among your highest priorities. it's perhaps a long list. would you care to list for us or describe, as you'd like, the things you think are the highest priorities you would have as an ambassador from the united states to the u.n.? ms. craft: thank you, senator. thank you for your time and tching up on our families in your office. it was refreshing. you know, i have given this a lot of thought because i understand my time there will not be a lengthy amount of time. and my top three issues were going to be reform, humanitarian needs, and public-private partnerships. you know, we have a secretary-general in gutierrez who also places reform as a top priority. i can't imagine a better partnership and a better teammate to be able to tackle reform and, you know, i've
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spoken to several of my predecessors and also been reading about the ones that i am going to be walking in their footsteps. i see each of them that i've spoken to and read about had reform as their top priority. i think it's important. we made small incremental steps but there is a lot to be done. you know, we owe it to our taxpayers to spend their money wisely and to be stewards of their money and also to make certain that their money is not spent in the u.n. system but out in the field helping the people that we are in humanitarian need. i mean, i think we need to be very cautious and careful about duplication in areas within the secretary -- secretariat. you know, in order to receive better transparency and accountability, i think it's vitally important that we really emphasize putting americans, having americans hired into the system because
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they're underrepresented. and also, promoting our allies in the system that share our values. because with that, we are going to have greater, you know, transparency, as you can see with unicef and the world food program, we have incredible transparency and accountability and success. within humanitarian issues, as you well know, this is something that's very dear to my heart, and i think it's very important that we stress burden sharing. who had' ever known that we have this -- who'd ever known that we have this time in history that we have so many needs throughout the world, whether it be in venezuela, you know, yemen, syria? you know, there are so many pressing matters. i think it's important -- i'd rather call it success sharing, because there's nothing better to know that you have helped another person -- this will be helping hundreds of thousands of people. and then with public-private partnerships, my husband and i
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have been very fortunate to have this experience with the craft academy and seen the successes of being able to partner with our state of kentucky in developing an academy for juniors and seniors in high school in a college program. and i think i can leverage my relationships and bring them, if confirmed, to the u.n. and, you know, the opportunities for underdeveloped countries, for americans to go in and add sustainability and to create community, especially for women and children and displaced people. it is just vast. it's actually very exciting. we are a nation that's always the first to arrive and the last to leave. i'm looking forward to bringing more people in that area of success. senator romney: thank you, ambassador. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. thank you for your testimony. we had a chance to talk. you expressed a lot of concern about the genocide.
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but our state department hasn't made a genocide determination. they have decided not to act. and would you push as u.n. ambassador for the state department to make a genocide determination? ms. craft: you know, thank you, senator. i know we both share the concern of the treatment of the rohingyas. it's unexcusable. it is ethnic cleansing. i trust in the fact we do now have someone that's been assigned to investigate and to really keep close all of their findings and hopes of bringing the military commanders and in hopes of having some sort of judicial system there. i think it's very important, as we discussed, that we make certain that bangladesh, that they also are in need as they have taken in all of these
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refugees. >> there is a lot we can examine in this. i'm just asking, will you push for the state department to complete a genocide determination? we are now approaching two years since the genocide occurred. ms. craft: senator, this is not a decision for me to make. this is a decision that's made within the state department, and i am looking forward to more conversation with you as we do share in the plight of the rohingyas and i can assure you that i will be a strong voice on behalf of the rohingyas. senator merkley: thank you. across the world, the u.n. population fund has been a critical factor in women's health. we've decided not to fund it as a nation, but it's hugely effective. our concerns have been about china and about the reproductive rights issues that have now been checked out many, many times and found china has completely changed their policies. would you support the u.s. enhancing women's health around the world by advocating for the u.n. population fund?
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ms. craft: senator, thank you. you know and i know that we strongly believe, and it's nice to hear maybe there is a different view on this now, that the chinese state institutions were providing -- actually being very coercive in abortions, and that's why we withdrew our $35 million and we placed that within usaid. as you well know, the united states, we are leaders in organizations throughout the u.n. in promoting the health and well-being of mothers and children, prenatal, postnatal and voluntary family planning. if it's correct, that there has been proof that the chinese have not been engaged in unfpa, i most certainly look forward to the discussion, if confirmed, at the u.n. senator merkley: so the intergovernmental panel on climate change said carbon
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pollution is a whole host. we see it in oregon. more snow pact. affecting our shellfish. our warmer winters. great for pine beetles. bad for pine trees. president trump said of the report, i don't believe it. do you believe it? ms. craft: senator, i have not seen that report, but i can tell you that we have issues around the world in underdeveloped nations where we have flooding and drought and different areas that have been attributed to climate change. alliance -- so that was a believe it answer? ms. craft: i have not read that report. if you don't mind the opportunity, i will be able to read it and answer you in writing. senator merkley: do you believe the core understanding that carbon pollution contributes to climate change? ms. craft: you know, i believe that climate change needs to be addressed and i believe that fossil fuels do play a role in
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attributing to climate change. senator merkley: alliance resource partners, which your family owns, lobbied the e.p.a. to implement policies that benefit polluting industries at the cost of clean water and air and u.s. leadership on climate. if confirmed, will you go to new york representing the interests of our country, and will you advocate for us to continue to support the commitments we made under the paris climate agreement? agreement? ms. craft: senator, if confirmed, i will be in full compliance of our ethics agreement. as you well know, we can be a leader, we are leaders without being a member of the paris climate agreement. within that agreement, we are already establishing success without being part of the paris climate agreement with our innovation, technology. we had a 14% reduction in emissions since 2005 to 2017 while at the same time our economy has been robust.
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senator merkley: since we're essentially on track, as you describe, and why does it benefit us in terms of international leadership to exit the agreement since it had great flexibility, why does it benefit america stepping out the role to hold others accountable? ms. craft: senator, we are going to hold people accountable whether we are in agreement or not. the proof is the steps we have taken to balance our economy and our environment and i think when other countries see you can do this and that our economy has grown while at the same time taking care of our environment, that's how we show leadership. senator merkley: my time's up. thank you. senator portman: thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, ambassador craft, for being here today and your willingness to step forward and serve, both in canada where you worked with us a lot on usmca and now through your nomination
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to the next job, which would be u.s. ambassador to the united nations, a huge job, i said earlier after hearing some of the back and forth -- i have a couple follow-up questions if that's ok. one is with regard to usmca, can you tell us what you think of that agreement? i know you were involved on the canadian side and getting them to make concessions. specifically on their dairy program and, you know, broadening the market access for some of our products, what do you think about usmca? ms. craft: thank you, senator, for the opportunity to dach about usmca. i am still ambassador to canada and engaged tomorrow discussing usmca. it was absolutely -- first, the canadians are as fierce negotiators as are americans. we learned that very quickly. as we discussed, i am a granddaughter of tobacco farmers. and i understand the importance of the emotional aspect when it relates to the agriculture
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chapter 3 of usmca. and was able you to really speak with ambassador lighthizer and the president and relay the message, we need to be a little more understanding of the emotional toil it was taking on the canadians when they have to go back to the quebec area and speak with the dairy farmers. this was an election year for prime minister trudeau. it was a very emotional topic for them with their dairy farmers. i think it's really important. it was very successful. most importantly, it lifted the doubt in the minds of americans and canadians and they were able to feel very secure and confident with their purchases, with, if they had small businesses or medium-sized businesses to know they will be supported by usmca. senator portman: so you support the agreement in its final form that was negotiated? ms. craft: absolutely, yes, i do. senator portman: moving on to
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the issue of boy cots, b.d.s. sanctions. senator cardin and i introduced a legislation that has over half of the senate supporting it, 58 co-sponsors. it simply says these efforts should not be supported because they are an effort to delegitimize israel, a form of discrimination. we have another bill, that also got a lot of support. we have not reintroduced it until we can have this broader discussion and that's with regard to the international organizations like the u.n. human rights commission. we looked very closely what the human rights council has done, what they have said with regard to israel. they have israel on their permanent agenda. as you know, you talked about that earlier. they put together a black list of companies that work in the gaza and we have not seen that yet. it has not come out yet. we have a deep concern about it. i'd ask you a couple questions. do you agree it's wrong that
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israel can be on the wrong agenda? do you think the b.d.s. efforts against israel -- to have a negotiated peace between israel and the palestinians? ms. craft: thank you, senator. on releasing names, i am certain that michelle is being very cautious and she's been working with us on protecting the names of businesses in israel and within -- outside of israel just to protect. there's no place to be able to release american businesses or any other businesses, for that matter, that could be harmed by a lift list being released. if confirmed there will be no stronger ally than kelly craft for israel on behalf of the united states. there is no room whatsoever for anti-israel bias or anti-semitism. you know, with the strength of this committee, i am certain that we can defeat any areas, whether it's the human rights
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council in bringing up anti-israel bias, every opportunity they have or anyplace in the u.n., there is no place for that. i think we need to really stress to israel and promote them. they are the best promoters themselves. you know, they are a startup nation. they need to be promoted to push themselves and normalize within the u.n. system, because they have a lot to offer. senator portman: well, look forward to working with you if you are confirmed and i believe will you. i know senator cardin and i would look forward to move with that legislation soon and ensure we don't have that black list ever be published because it would then, as you say, have a negative impact on a lot of things, including the peace process, in my view, between israel and the palestinians. on human trafficking, i know you have been involved on this issue and care a lot about it. there is the center for international crime convention which addresses trafficking. if confirmed, would you pledge making human trafficking and sex trafficking a key part of our efforts?
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ms. craft: anywhere within the u.n. system where there is human rights abuses, human trafficking, i mean, this affects everyone. i give you my word i will be a strong advocate combating human trafficking and any human rights abuses. senator portman: thank you. senator risch: thank you. senator kaine. senator kaine: thank you. i want to congratulate the ambassador on her ambassador. thank you to her hospitality when we went to halifax in november. you will be a strong advocate for human rights in the u.n. system and i appreciated that aspect of our one-on-one discussion. i just want to ask you about the news of today. just the news of today. in january, agnus was appointed the u.n. special on the -- e's the ex-repertoire on extrajudicial summary on executions. she announced she would be leading an investigation into
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the assassination of saudi citizen virginia, "washington post" journalist jamal khashoggi. the report came out today. it's damning but not surprising but it mirrors the c.i.a.'s conclusions. i quote, it is the conclusion of the special repertoire that mr. khashoggi has been the victim of a deliberate, premeditated execution and extra judicial killing for which the state of saudi arabia is responsible under international human rights law. i'd like to introduce the u.n. report in the record if i may. >> you may. senator kaine: it finds six violations of international law. the prohibition against arbitrary deprivation of life -- >> all of this confirmation hearing will air later in our program schedule on the c-span networks. here on c-span, we're breaking away and going back live to the capitol hill to the u.s. house. they'll come back in and consider spending legislation for fiscal year 2020. they'll take a final pas


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