Rep. Kelly Sends Letter to White House Opposing Arms Trade Treaty
Bipartisan Letter Signed by 181 Members of Congress
WASHINGTON — Representative Mike Kelly (R-PA) issued the following statement today after submitting a bipartisan letter to President Obama in opposition to the administration’s recent signing of the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The letter is backed by 180 co-signers from both parties and includes members of House Leadership such as Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-CA), Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX), and Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA).
“Today the People’s House takes a stand for national sovereignty where the White House failed to do so. The ATT is a clear threat to the Constitutional rights of all Americans and should never have been signed. This letter makes it absolutely clear to President Obama and his cabinet that the United States Congress will not support any implementing legislation to give this dangerous treaty the legs it needs to take effect. We will also oppose any efforts by this administration or future ones to implement or enforce this treaty through executive action. The liberty of the American people and the independence of the United States are far too sacred to ever be sacrificed at the altar of a dysfunctional global institution like the United Nations. For the sake of our freedom at home and our strength abroad, this fight must continue.”
NOTE: Rep. Kelly is a national leader of the movement to stop the ATT. On March 15, 2013, he introduced H. Con. Res. 23, a bipartisan concurrent resolution expressing opposition to the treaty, which currently has 149 co-sponsors in the House and 36 supporters in the Senate.
On June 14, 2013, Rep. Kelly introduced an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014 (NDAA) to prohibit federal funding for the implementation of the ATT for one year by the Department of Defense. The amendment was adopted unanimously by a voice vote and included in the final passage of the NDAA by the House of Representatives.
On July 24, 2013, the House Appropriations Committee approved the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2014 which imposes a one-year ban on the use of federal funds for the implementation of the ATT by the State Department. The ban is based on language from a bipartisan letter which Rep. Kelly authored and submitted to the State and Foreign Operations subcommittee on April 18, 2013.