Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tenn.) sent the Obama administration a fourth letter Monday requesting an explanation for the United States secretly sending money to Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai.
Corker, ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, placed a hold on $75 million in federal funds intended for Afghanistan until he receives “sufficient assurances that there is a process in place to ensure our policy toward governance in Afghanistan is coherent and supports our national interests.”
As a matter of oversight of U.S. foreign policy operations, I have repeatedly requested briefings and additional information on the nature and effect of this policy, classified and unclassified, as appropriate. The administration’s lack of any response to these requests, its apparent decision to flout the Foreign Relations Committee’s oversight, and its inability (or unwillingness) to explain such a policy is unacceptable. As a consequence, I have determined that the further commitment of taxpayer funds at this time toward such an incoherent governance strategy would not be in our national interest, and I am placing a formal hold on Congressional Notification 65, relating to USAID programs in Afghanistan. Specifically, the hold pertains to $75 million intended for electoral programs in Afghanistan.