Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday made an impassioned case for foreign aid, arguing that investments abroad make America safer and stronger at home.
"This is a time to continue to engage, for the sake of the safety and economic health of our country," Kerry said in his first major speech since becoming secretary of state at the University of Virginia. "This is not optional. It is a necessity. The American people understand this."
Kerry noted that the State Department does not have a vocal constituency in Congress to protect its funding. "The State Department doesn't have it's own Grover Norquist pushing a pledge to protect it," Kerry said, referring to the anti-tax activist.