Washington D.C. – Today, Congressman Michael McCaul (R-TX), Lead Republican of the House Foreign Affairs Committee,  joined Senior Advisor to the President, Ivanka Trump, Secretary of State Michael Pompeo, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Mark Green and other stakeholders at the Women’s Global Development Prosperity (W-GDP) one year anniversary event. The W-GDP Initiative aims to empower women globally through: workforce development and skills training; promoting entrepreneurship and access to capital; and removing barriers to women’s participation in the economy. Through W-GDP, the United States seeks to reach 50 million women across the developing world by 2025. In its first year, W-GDP reached 12 million women through U.S. supported programs and partnerships. 

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-Remarks as Delivered-

“Thank you for having me. It is an honor to be here with all of you to celebrate the one-year anniversary of the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative. Last year, I had the honor to travel with Senator Graham and Ivanka Trump to Cote D’Ivoire to launch this important effort. The energy and the excitement around this initiative was incredible. Ivanka, you are a rockstar, and you are a rockstar over there. I am so proud to support you in this critical work. You set a deadline as Lindsey mentioned, and we met that deadline. I’m proud to say that. 

In this partisan and polarized time in our government, there are very few things we get to work on that earn such bipartisan support. Senator Shaheen, thank you for your work on this as well. But when I look at the esteemed guests here today, this is truly an interagency, bicameral, and bipartisan effort. That is because we know the impact that we are having here today. When a woman is empowered and an active participant in her community, economy and society, we know that countries are more stable and more prosperous. That is why Senator Graham and I passed the Global Fragility Act, to stabilize these destabilized nations and to get to the root cause of extremism. 

When Secretary Pompeo talks about fighting instability and terrorism, when Mark Green talks about supporting a country’s “Journey to Self-Reliance”, when Larry Kudlow talks opportunity for U.S. business investment, I think this effort to empower women is central to all of these U.S. foreign policy objectives. The biggest threat to extremism is an empowered woman. This is a national security issue. 

That is why W-GDP set a goal to reach 50 million women globally in developing countries by 2025. I look forward to working with all of you to not only meet, but surpass this goal. I applaud my friends Senator Graham and Senator Shaheen for today’s introduction of the W-GDP Act. Building on the success of the WEEE Act last Congress, this legislation will codify the important interagency coordination and senior leadership dedicated to advancing this work.

And most importantly in the House I am currently working with my good friend Representative Frankel and Chairman Engel. We will  introduce the House companion to this legislation in the next few days. It will take everyone working together – the interagency, NGOs, advocacy organizations and private sector partners – to get this done and on the President’s desk. I look forward to that great day when we will be sitting in the Oval Office and having this bill signed into law. Thank you.”