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Archived Blog Posts
Showing 15 posts from 2015.
Revenue transparency complements aid transparency
Improving foreign aid accountability, especially through transparency, monitoring and evaluation, has been the hallmark of The Lugar Center’s (TLC) work in Foreign Aid Effectiveness and in partnership with the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (MFAN). Knowing--and publicizing--just how much assistance is going where, and gaining honest measurements of its impact are vital to making foreign aid more effective.... Read More
Bipartisan Index Scores Show Growth of Partisan Culture in Senate
Last May the Lugar Center and the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University released our initial Bipartisan Index covering the 113th Congress. As part of this launch, we also shared charts that showed the 112th and 113th Congresses as the most partisan since 1993, when judged according to our bill sponsorship and co-sponsorship metrics. ... Read More
Rethinking Feed the Future
The USAID-led Feed the Future (FfF) initiative is a signature Obama administration program supporting food security and poverty reduction in a number of developing countries. Now in its 5th year, USAID reports that it has reached about 14 million farmers and made improvements on nearly 10 million hectares of farm land in its 19 focus countries. Its progress reports (2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015) are glowing, although there has been no independent evaluation of its impact. (The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has done a report on coordination issues but not on whether Feed the Future is accomplishing its objectives.)... Read More
The Kind of Congress We Need: More Bipartisan
Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates, in an insightful op-ed in the Washington Post, “The kind of president we need,” called for a chief executive who can compromise, solve problems and, most importantly, “be a true unifier of Americans.” In my view, this is particularly important in foreign policy.... Read More
Use the Iran deal to raise the bar for everyone
The Iran nuclear deal—the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)—met a lot of resistance from hardliners in Teheran. They complained that Iran was being forced to adopt stricter non-proliferation policies than any other country. In many ways they are right.... Read More
Rebuilding Foreign Policy Consensus
The passage of a bipartisan budget deal avoiding a government shutdown and the selection of policy-minded Rep. Paul Ryan (R Wis.) as the new Speaker of the House signal at least a brief truce in the bitter partisan fights over the budget and spending that have roiled Capitol Hill.... Read More
Bipartisan Index: Some House Leadership Candidates More Partisan than Others
Not surprisingly, all the candidates jockeying for leadership positions in the upcoming House Republican caucus vote to replace Speaker John Boehner claim to have sterling conservative credentials. None has earned a reputation as a legislator eager to reach across the aisle and work with Democrats.... Read More
Senator Lugar's Introduction to the Bipartisan Index
The Bipartisan Index is intended to fill a hole in the information available to the public about the performance of Members of Congress. There are innumerable studies, rankings, and indexes that grade members according to a partisan, parochial, or special-interest standard.... Read More
Not Chipotle Too!
Hardly a day goes by lately that there isn’t a new GMO story in the news. Whether it’s scare tactics by someone trying to make a name for himself or a company reacting to these tactics by taking action to hold its market share, the issue is hard to miss. But last week’s announcement by Chipotle that it sells only non-GMO ingredients in its restaurants really struck a nerve. Really, Chipotle is succumbing to fear-mongering and junk science to hold market share?... Read More
'Kudos' on US food aid reform hearing
April 15 may be tax day, but this year it is also the day on which an important conversation will take place about the accountability of taxpayer dollars in reaching the greatest number of people in crisis with food. Thanks to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, members of the committee will be asking whether the time has come to reform our nation’s food aid program.... Read More