CASE FORMS CONGRESSIONAL PACIFIC ISLANDS CAUCUS IN THE HOUSE
(Honolulu, HI) – U.S. Congressman Ed Case (Hawai‘i – District 1) today announced the first-ever formation of the Congressional Pacific Islands Caucus, which he will co-chair along with three high-ranking U.S. House colleagues.
“I have been convinced for some time that our country’s and world’s future are in the Indo-Pacific, and the islands of the Pacific are a key yet too-often-overlooked part of that region,” said Case.
“These islands and their maritime exclusive economic zones are not only part of our own Pacific ‘ohana but encompass an area larger than the land areas of Russia and China combined.
“We have longstanding partnerships and critical strategic and other interests throughout the Pacific Islands, not to mention that whole generations fought and won the Second World War and earlier conflicts here,” continued Case. “Yet now they are increasingly under severe economic and environmental stress, and China is actively seeking to grow its influence. We cannot now turn away from the Pacific, and our new Caucus is dedicated to assuring that that does not happen.”
Case’s founding Caucus Co-Chairs are Congressman Don Young (R-Alaska), the Dean of the House and a longtime friend and partner of Hawai’i; Congressman Brad Sherman (D-California), chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee’s Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation; and Congressman Ted Yoho (R-Florida), the ranking member of that Subcommittee.
“I am proud to be a founding member of the bipartisan Congressional Pacific Islands Caucus and look forward to working together with my fellow Co-Chair and friend, Congressman Ed Case of Hawaii, and other Members to demonstrate our nation’s steadfast commitment to the Indo-Pacific region.” said Congressman Don Young. “We will work hard to increase the understanding of the Congress on issues related to trade, economic development, and shared security in order to ensure the prosperity for all in the region.”
Case said the Caucus will:
- Serve as a resource in educating Members and staffs on the importance of the Pacific Islands and the issues they face.
- Demonstrate the United States’ commitment to the Indo-Pacific and specifically to the Pacific Islands.
- Facilitate communication and cooperation on issues of shared interest between the United States and the Pacific Islands, including development, trade, and regional stability and security.
- Assist in formulating and implementing sound national policy in the Indo-Pacific over the next generation.
Case said the issues the Caucus will focus on include:
- Trade and development,
- Security, including defense cooperation and maritime security, and
- Climate change and ocean conservation