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Washington, D.C. – Today, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Michael McCaul delivered remarks at a full committee hearing examining the importance of the trilateral AUKUS security pact among the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. In his remarks, Chairman McCaul highlighted the significance of reforming America’s foreign military sales (FMS) and projecting robust, stable security partnerships to deter malign actors abroad, such as the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the Kremlin.


WATCH his full remarks here.


– Remarks as Delivered –


One of America’s most effective tools has been deterrence—leveraging our arsenal of democracy for global stability.

However, since the deadly and chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan, this administration has failed to project strength on the world stage.

We are witnessing the development of a deadly and unholy alliance among our adversaries.

They are working together to undermine Western values, attempting to change the global balance of power.

The world has seen Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine, an emboldened Chairman Xi threatening Taiwan, and the Iranian regime continuing to fund its terror proxies.

Iran is at the center of destabilization in the Middle East, greenlighting unrelenting attacks on Israel as I speak, commercial shipping, and our own troops in the region.

Including several deaths recently, including our troops, and dozens more injured.

Russia is now getting component parts from China, ballistic missiles from North Korea, and manufactures Iranian drones in-country.

China is expanding its nuclear arsenal, while its military-civil fusion strategy uses our technology and investments against us to advance and strengthen the CCP.

And North Korea continues to build up its nuclear and ballistic missile program, despite UN sanctions.

As the world burns, America is being tested.

We must modernize our approach to security to advance our strategic goals. That includes working with our allies in new and innovative ways.

AUKUS is a prime example of how we should be partnering with our closest allies.

I agree with the administration, that to counter CCP aggression we must work with our closest allies—importantly here, the U.K. and Australia.

That is why I led the bipartisan AUKUS implementation legislation, which passed into law this past December on the National Defense Authorization bill.

This legislation grants the administration the authority to issue [International Traffic in Arms Regulations] exemptions, so we can deploy cutting-edge technology with our closest partners.

This April, a presidential determination to finally grant these exemptions will allow the AUKUS pact to move forward.

It will show the world we will not be intimated by Chairman Xi.

Alongside AUKUS, we need to rebuild our defense industrial base.

The defense industrial base is strained to maintain our own military readiness while meeting the critical needs of our partners.

We must make investments to support the defense industrial base, and include innovative companies that are producing cutting-edge technology, but struggle to secure a government contract.

We must cut through the red tape and streamline the process to make federal contracts obtainable and trust the private sector to do what it does best—and that’s innovate.

These innovative companies are eager to collaborate on research and development of advanced capabilities like artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, quantum computing, and hypersonic systems.

As we grow the AUKUS collaboration, we can expand to space systems and other cutting-edge technology.

Bureaucracy should not get in the way of American innovation.

Additionally, to successfully move forward, we must reform our foreign military sales process.

When I travel overseas, I hear the same thing over-and-over from our allies: they want our equipment and our weapon systems, but they can’t afford the delays.

Since 2019, I have approved 19 sales totaling over $22 billion to Taiwan that have yet to be delivered.

When I was in-country last April, President Tsai asked me, “Where are my weapons? I paid for them.” I didn’t really have a good answer.

Seeing these challenges firsthand, I convened a task force led by Representative Waltz, which last week published its report highlighting desperately needed improvements to our (FMS) process. It’s called the “Foreign Military Sales [Technical, Industrial, and Governmental Engagement for Readiness] Task Force Report,” recently released.

It will be the first time we’ve had FMS reform. The first time in a generation.

And we’re not done.

We’re going to look at outdated arms control and nonproliferation policies, like the Missile Technology Control Regime, and whether the Department’s structural organization needs updating to combat the challenges we face today.

Xi is not slowing down his malign agenda, and neither should we slow down in the face of that.

However, with AUKUS, we have an opportunity to build on American innovation and partner with our closest allies to deter and defend against the CCP.

At the same time, we need to protect the U.S. and our allies with a credible nuclear deterrent.

Outdated Cold War nuclear systems are no longer adequate to face the dual nuclear threat we face from Putin and Xi.

Only from a position of strength can we negotiate.

We are at risk of losing that strength as we let our deterrence age and desperately grasp at negotiations with the Russians and Chinese.

The United States does not seek conflict—but only through strength can we provide the deterrence necessary to secure peace in the region, and around the globe.