NDN Endorses the Global Poverty Act

Publish Date: 
Wednesday, April 30, 2008

NDN President Simon Rosenberg today announced that NDN is endorsing the Global Poverty Act, which was introduced by U.S Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA) and passed by the U.S. House of Representatives last year.  U.S. Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) has introduced similar legislation in the U.S. Senate.  Below is the letter NDN wrote to Smith and Obama:


Dear Congressman Smith and Senator Obama,

Today NDN is proud to add its name to those organizations supporting your far-sighted Global Poverty Act (H.R. 1302, S.2433).

In 2007, Congressman Smith, you argued:

Global poverty is one of the greatest moral and security challenges facing the world today. Nearly 2.7 billion people live on less than $2 a day and close to a billion live on less than $1 a day. This bill represents a major advance in our effort to address global poverty.

And Senator Obama, you added:

With billions of people living on just dollars a day around the world, global poverty remains one of the greatest challenges and tragedies the international community faces. It must be a priority of American foreign policy to commit to eliminating extreme poverty and ensuring every child has food, shelter, and clean drinking water. As we strive to rebuild America's standing in the world, this important bill will demonstrate our promise and commitment to those in the developing world.

The Global Poverty Act is designed to help the United States achieve the United Nation’s eight Millennium Development Goals, which aim to eradicate extreme global poverty by 2015. 

NDN calls on President Bush and Congress to enact the Global Poverty Act this year. This legislation would require the President to develop and implement a comprehensive strategy to further the U.S. foreign policy objective of cutting extreme poverty in half by 2015.  To meet this objective and the other Millennium Development Goals, we urge President Bush and Congress to commit to increasing U.S. foreign assistance to 0.7 percent of GNP, the amount benchmarked for U.N. donor countries. 

In this age of globalization, our country’s economic and national security interests are increasingly bound to those of developing nations.  In our much more interdependent and connected age, a single fragile, failed or rogue state can do much more to degrade the earth’s environment and spread disease, terrorism, deadly weapons, and instability than ever before.  Thus, helping those peoples and nations struggling to build healthy, modern civil societies is not only the right thing to do, it is a true national security requirement for all free nations in the globalized world of the 21st century. 

In addition, raising just a small percentage of the world's people out of extreme poverty can help lift global incomes and contribute to the economic well being of the global economy.  As the economic success of countries such as India has shown, even the poorest countries can rapidly become important contributors to the global economy.

By adopting the Global Poverty Act this year, America’s leaders can send a powerful signal to the world that in the years ahead, the United States intends to reclaim its historic role as the world’s great champion of what we call the American formula: working to advance democracy, free markets, the rule of law, and personal liberty for all the peoples of the world no matter where they live, no matter how poor they are, no matter to whom them pray, no matter the color of their skin. 

We at NDN look forward to working with you in the years ahead to turn the Global Poverty Act from a visionary bill to an inspirational reality for billions around the world. 

Sincerely yours,

Simon Rosenberg