President Trump believes the United States should be spending less on foreign aid, which is why he plans to end all assistance to Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. In reality, only 1% of the U.S. Budget it dedicated to foreign aid, and this 1% is essential to our country’s national security. Here is why:

When underdeveloped countries receive less foreign aid, they become significantly more likely to encourage terrorism and violence. This motivates thousands of people to seek refuge in nearby countries, like America. What the Trump Administration fails to understand is that building a wall does not prevent refugees from needing asylum in our country. The solution, instead, is to dedicate foreign aid to nations in need of safety and stability.

Congressmen from both parties are urging the President to rethink this change. Senators Mark Warner, Tim Kaine, and 32 others joined together to criticize Trump’s “flawed understanding of U.S. foreign assistance”:

“Our national security funding is specifically designed to promote American interests, enhance our collective security, and protect the safety of our citizens.”

As a Virginia constituent, I thank my senators along with many others for supporting international aid, and for seeing its importance. If President Trump goes through with this plan, he is putting the citizens of America in danger by promoting global instability, mass migration to our border, and poor national security. He is directly going against his own promise to eliminate drug trafficking and illegal immigration.

It is a step in the wrong direction.

APARNA MARATHE

BLACKSBURG

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