Like Countable?

Install the App
TRY NOW

senate Bill S. 1309

Should Federal Agencies Increase Coordination of Global Anti-Corruption Efforts?

Argument in favor

Corruption is a global problem that impacts everyone, and the federal government’s anti-corruption efforts should be coordinated across relevant agencies to improve their effectiveness, and publicized to ensure that both government employees and the public are aware of these efforts.

Corey's Opinion
···
10/19/2019
Oh this is a riot. Yes let’s start right now here with trump and his lying treasonous thrives
Like (81)
Follow
Share
jimK's Opinion
···
10/20/2019
Corruption is a huge issue in our dealings with other countries and this legislation is a reasonable start at attempting to quantify levels of corruption around the world. The positives are that this legislation may have prevented sales of US military tech to the Saudi’s- making our relations more contingent upon international relations than upon the dollar value of the ‘deal’. There are a couple of concerns. First and foremost we must clean up our act; claiming that some other country is corrupt bears little credence until we demonstrably clean out corrupt practices at home. Secondly, there needs to be some congressional oversight of this process to prevent it’s use to punish political enemies or support improper political manipulation. Finally, there should be some formal involvement with established allies to contribute to or address issues with categorizations we come up with; which would give some international clout to dealing with corrupt governments. In general, just highlighting that we will be formally identifying corrupt practices is a good thing; but it must be done as a part of a strategic process and not as a ‘one-and-done’ legislation.
Like (59)
Follow
Share
RjGoodman's Opinion
···
10/20/2019
Once we get our own corruption under control, this is an excellent idea.
Like (46)
Follow
Share

Argument opposed

The federal government should be focused on speeding its responsiveness to foreign requests for anti-corruption investigation assistance instead of adopting a new system for evaluating and combating corruption around the globe, which could prove controversial.

Sarah's Opinion
···
10/19/2019
The corruption at the White House and Senate is so entrenched that we need to worry more about cleaning up our own government.
Like (57)
Follow
Share
B.R.'s Opinion
···
10/20/2019
Who are we to preach to other countries about corruption when our own Government has always been corrupt and continues to be.
Like (24)
Follow
Share
operaman's Opinion
···
10/20/2019
Just more money to be corrupted or manipulated for personal gain.
Like (13)
Follow
Share

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Foreign Relations
    IntroducedMay 2nd, 2019

What is Senate Bill S. 1309?

This bill – the Combating Global Corruption Act of 2019 — seeks to raise the profile of efforts to fight international corruption, make fighting international corruption an American national security priority, encourage greater transparency in U.S. foreign and security assistance and publicize anti-corruption efforts and their results worldwide. To these ends, this bill would require the State Dept. to author and publicly distribute a report, similar to its annual Trafficking in Persons Report, summarizing the extent of corruption in countries worldwide and assigning tiered classifications based on certain minimum standards of governmental efforts to combat corruption.

The three tiers that governments would be classified into are as follows: 

  • Tier One: If the government complies with the minimum standards;
  • Tier Two: If the government is making efforts, but falls short of the minimum standards; and
  • Tier Three: If the government is making de minimis or no efforts to comply with the minimum standards.

This bill would also specify transparency and accountability measures for the State Dept., Dept. of Defense (DOD) and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to implement in order to increase transparency and accountability for U.S. foreign assistance to Tier 3 countries. The measures include: conducting corruption risk assessments, creating corruption mitigation strategies, use of anti-corruption clauses in assistance contracts, inclusion of claw-back provisions in assistance contracts, establishing investigative mechanisms for allegations of misappropriated assistance, and implementation of democracy and governance programs that include anti-corruption components.

Prior to providing any foreign assistance (with the exception of humanitarian, disaster and anti-corruption assistance) to a Tier 3 country, the State Dept. would: 

  • Conduct a corruption risk assessment and create a corruption mitigation strategy for all foreign assistance programs to that country; 
  • Require the inclusion of anti-corruption clauses for all foreign assistance contracts and grants; 
  • Require the inclusion of clawback clauses for all foreign assistance contracts and grants to recover U.S. taxpayer funds that have been misappropriated through corruption; 
  • Require disclosure of the beneficial ownership of all entities receiving foreign assistance funding; and 
  • Establish a mechanism for investigating allegations of misappropriated foreign assistance funds or equipment.

To better disseminate information about anti-corruption efforts across the U.S. government, the State Dept. and USAID would consolidate existing reports with anti-corruption components into one public online platform and incorporate anti-corruption components into existing Foreign Service and Civil Service training courses.

Impact

Federal efforts to fight corruption around the world; State Dept.; USAID; DOD; Foreign Service training courses; Civil Service training courses; and foreign countries that receive U.S. foreign aid.

Cost of Senate Bill S. 1309

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-DepthSen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to raise the profile of efforts to fight international corruption, make fighting international corruption an American national security priority, encourage greater transparency in U.S. foreign and security assistance and publicize anti-corruption efforts and their results worldwide

“Corruption is a fundamental obstacle to peace, prosperity, and human rights all around the world. Where there are high levels of corruption we find fragile states, authoritarian states, or states suffering from internal or external conflict – in places such as Afghanistan and Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Nigeria, and Sudan. Combating corruption should be elevated and prioritized across American foreign policy efforts. I thank my colleagues for their bipartisan support.”

Original cosponsor Sen. Todd Young (R-IN) adds

“Global corruption is often at the root of conflict, humanitarian suffering, and political crises. In places like Afghanistan, Yemen, and Venezuela, corruption has undermined the rule of law and stood in the way of humanitarian aid reaching those in need. I am proud of this bipartisan effort to combat corruption around the world by standing with the world’s most vulnerable and holding those in power responsible for their actions.”

When this bill was introduced last Congress, Buckley LLP wrote on its FCPA Scorecard Blog that it “would create substantial new law enforcement power to combat international corruption activities.” Transparency International, a global nonprofit with the mission of combating global corruption with civil societal anti-corruption measures and preventing criminal activities arising from corruption, also expressed its support for the bill. Its Director of Defense and Security, Katherine Dixon, said

“The link between corruption and development is simple: corrupt leaders that siphon state funds and resources away from vulnerable populations bring about weak states and public unrest, creating fertile ground for terrorists and organised crime. The February repeal of Section 1504 was a step back for US anti-corruption efforts. But, with the Combating Global Corruption Act, we have the chance to make some big moves forward. In evaluating how seriously countries take corruption on their home turf, the US has raised the spectre of global corruption and elevated it on the foreign policy agenda.”

Writing in the Global Anticorruption Blog (GAB) when this bill was introduced in the 115th Congress, Harvard Law Professor Matthew Stephenson praised this bill as “a worthwhile proposal that deserves more attention”: 

“[O]n the whole, it seems to me that this is the sort of bill that the U.S. anticorruption community ought to support… Why do I like it? A few main reasons: First, independent of the foreign assistance conditions, a statute like this will help in the anticorruption fight by raising the profile of the issue, both inside and outside the U.S. government, and requiring the regular compilation and presentation of information on what different countries are doing with respect to corruption. Those with the requisite knowledge and interest within the U.S. government will see their value rise, and the issuance of the annual reports will attract attention from Congress, the media, and the general public. Second, for all their problems and limitations (on which more in a moment), my impression is that the TVPA, on which the CGCA is so clearly and closely modeled, has had a meaningful impact, not only because of the foreign aid conditionality, but simply because of the prestige costs of being labeled a delinquent on the fight against human trafficking. I freely admit that I’m not terribly knowledgeable about this, and if I’m wrong in my conjecture that the TVPA has had an overall positive effect, I hope someone out there in reader-land will correct me. But in general, I think that “naming and shaming” strategies in this area can be helpful, though it probably goes without saying that they’re nowhere near enough. Third, I like the fact that the proposed evaluation system focuses less on the extent of the problem, and more on how much various governments are doing about it. I certainly hope that an assessment of how effectively the country is taking action to combat corruption is construed broadly to include, say, effective enforcement of anti-money laundering and know-your-customer laws, so that financial centers that turn a blind eye to the corrupt source of dirty money are scrutinized as well.”

However, Stephenson also noted a number of problems with this bill. He noted that the TVPA’s ranking system has proven controversial, opening the U.S. up to accusations that it “plays politics” with at least some of the report’s classifications — odds are that similar accusations would be levied against the report this bill requires. Similarly, Stephenson notes that the U.S. needs to be “acutely sensitive” to accusations of hypocrisy when accusing other countries of not meeting “minimum standards” on certain anti-corruption issues, such as responding quickly to foreign governments’ requests for assistance in corruption investigations. Third, Stephenson argues that “there’s a bit of a mismatch between the classification criteria and the special conditions for tier-3 countries.” However, despite these qualms, Stephenson nonetheless calls this bill “the kind of thing the U.S. anti-corruption community might want to champion.”

This bill has five bipartisan cosponsors, including three Democrats and two Republicans, in the current session of Congress and has yet to receive a committee vote. This bill had eight bipartisan cosponsors, including five Democrats and three Republicans, in the 115th Congress and didn’t receive a committee vote.


Of NoteSen. Cardin’s office notes that global corruption erodes trust and confidence in democratic institutions, the rule of law and human rights protections. It also damages the United States’ competitiveness and creates barriers to economic growth in international markets. Globally, corruption endangers national and international security by fostering violent extremist, hampering the United States’ ability to combat terrorism, entrenching high poverty and weakening institutions seeking to govern and instil accountability.

According to Sen. Cardin’s office, global corruption can also have a “severe, negative impact on the effectiveness of U.S. foreign assistance.” Thus, the office argues, corruption risk assessment and analyses before, during and after the provision of foreign and security assistance is key to reducing and eliminating corruption and holding U.S. foreign assistance and security assistance programs accountable to U.S. taxpayers.


Media:

Summary by Lorelei Yang

(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / P_Wei)

AKA

Combating Global Corruption Act of 2019

Official Title

A bill to identify and combat corruption in countries, to establish a tiered system of countries with respect to levels of corruption by their governments and their efforts to combat such corruption, and to assess United States assistance to designated countries in order to advance anti-corruption efforts in those countries and better serve United States taxpayers.

    Oh this is a riot. Yes let’s start right now here with trump and his lying treasonous thrives
    Like (81)
    Follow
    Share
    The corruption at the White House and Senate is so entrenched that we need to worry more about cleaning up our own government.
    Like (57)
    Follow
    Share
    Corruption is a huge issue in our dealings with other countries and this legislation is a reasonable start at attempting to quantify levels of corruption around the world. The positives are that this legislation may have prevented sales of US military tech to the Saudi’s- making our relations more contingent upon international relations than upon the dollar value of the ‘deal’. There are a couple of concerns. First and foremost we must clean up our act; claiming that some other country is corrupt bears little credence until we demonstrably clean out corrupt practices at home. Secondly, there needs to be some congressional oversight of this process to prevent it’s use to punish political enemies or support improper political manipulation. Finally, there should be some formal involvement with established allies to contribute to or address issues with categorizations we come up with; which would give some international clout to dealing with corrupt governments. In general, just highlighting that we will be formally identifying corrupt practices is a good thing; but it must be done as a part of a strategic process and not as a ‘one-and-done’ legislation.
    Like (59)
    Follow
    Share
    Once we get our own corruption under control, this is an excellent idea.
    Like (46)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes. We must start our anti-corruption efforts with the current government.
    Like (28)
    Follow
    Share
    Who are we to preach to other countries about corruption when our own Government has always been corrupt and continues to be.
    Like (24)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes. Start with the pig living at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    ARE WE BEGINNING WITH THIS ADMINISTRATION? EVERY REPUBLICAN WHO HAD SUPPORTED THAT MORON IN THE WHITE HOUSE!! YOU COULD START WITH MY GEORGIA REPUBLICAN SENATORS, ISAKSON AND PERDUE AND REPUBLICAN REPRESENTATIVE FERGUSON...THEY HAVE ZERO MORAL COMPASS 🧭!!
    Like (14)
    Follow
    Share
    Just more money to be corrupted or manipulated for personal gain.
    Like (13)
    Follow
    Share
    The Presence in the Oval Office has provided us with an abundance of lemons from which to make oceans of lemonade. This is but one. The availability, thanks to the information revolution, of near-instant communications worldwide offers a unique opportunity for calling out bad behavior that does not support the betterment of humanity, and actually being able to direct worldwide as well as local and national energies towards pressuring those acting badly to change their ways. Once we begin, however, we must commit to making it possible for future generations to follow in our footsteps and continue the work. It is the nature of humans to seek the easy way regardless of the harm to others, to rationalize their actions and to hide those actions. As long as their are humans in existence, this will likely remain to one degree or another a part of what it is to be human. While we may not be able to erase it, we can limit its effects on our communities, governments and institutions. The coordination of effective efforts worldwide to confront and address corruption will be challenging and may in fact be limited in our ability to enforce. However, it is something in which ALL levels of society, in every culture and nation can actively participate, and it could be the glue that could bind nations together to work cooperatively. It might even form the very worldwide motivation needed to bring nations together in other challenges we must address worldwide like climate change and the global economy. The US could be both the leader to promote this effort through cleaning its own house first and the example of how to change so that we can stand once again as a courageous model to look to, making lemonade out of our current position in world affairs. I support this initial effort to bring a concrete bill for increasing anti-corruption efforts globally and here at home in the USA.👍👍
    Like (12)
    Follow
    Share
    I thought this was one of the reasons the Department of Homeland Security was created. This Bill should be passed to make it clear that all federal agencies are able to share their databases and resources as part of a coordinated effort to fight corruption.
    Like (10)
    Follow
    Share
    Start with Individual-1 and his grifter family and the F-list sycophants he appointed to various offices. 🐍
    Like (10)
    Follow
    Share
    I’m tired of the corruption in DC and all around the world the only one that loses is people like you and I. The rich get richer the poor get poorer.
    Like (10)
    Follow
    Share
    As Long As We Start At Home First Corruption is a global problem that impacts everyone, and the federal government’s anti-corruption efforts should be coordinated across relevant agencies to improve their effectiveness, and publicized to ensure that both government employees and the public are aware of these efforts. SneakyPete. Go For It. 10.20.19
    Like (9)
    Follow
    Share
    S 1309. So foolish. Your joking? You cannot even prevent corruption within our own federal government. When will we get all of Hillary’s emails? When will all those Congressmen that participated in sexual misconduct be held to account?
    Like (8)
    Follow
    Share
    For too long Washington elites and their families have collided against the American people and our interests. It’s past time this stops!
    Like (8)
    Follow
    Share
    This might stop the other countries from interfering in our politics and prevent scandalous activities. Foreign corruption threatens our government and our allies, we shouldn’t be letting countries get away with it.
    Like (8)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes, and they can start right here at home with the Trump administration and his many sleazy buddies (personal lawyer, cabinet members, Trump Supreme Court Justices, Republican Congressional leaders who continue to turn a blind eye to his misdeeds and probable illegal beh., as well as other associates).
    Like (8)
    Follow
    Share
    How bout we clean our own white house first. Our republic is degenerating into a kleptocracy around our ears!
    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
    Are we part of the world? Is there corruption in our country? Is there corruption in our government. Yes we should be concerned because world wide corruption is as bad as world wide terrorism!
    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
    MORE