WASHINGTON—Representative Eliot L. Engel, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today made the following statement:

“President Trump is again ceding U.S. leadership in the Americas by skipping the upcoming Summit of the Americas. Since its inception, every U.S. president – from both Republican and Democratic Administrations – has attended the Summit. If the President of the United States is indeed the leader of the free world, that person should be able to walk and chew gum at the same time.

“The hemisphere is facing serious challenges, including the crisis in Venezuela, and the U.S. void will be deeply felt. Unfortunately, today’s announcement should come as no surprise from an Administration whose policy toward the region begins with building a wall between our country and our southern neighbors. I urge the President to reconsider his shortsighted decision.”

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