WHAT ROLE FOR CONGRESS? STEMMING THE UNFOLDING CRISIS IN VENEZUELA

On March 20, Partnership for a Secure America hosted another event of our CPP Solutions Series. This alumni-only dinner discussion focused on “What Role for Congress? Stemming the Unfolding Crisis in Venezuela.” The round-table dinner was off-the-record, following the Chatham House Rule.

Political tensions in Venezuela have grown exponentially in recent weeks through a deepening humanitarian crisis and an increasingly precarious political standoff between President Maduro and US-backed Juan Guaido. Nationwide blackouts have exacerbated the already crippling domestic humanitarian crisis while military blockades to humanitarian relief efforts have reduced access for international aid organizations.  Russia’s support of the Maduro regime has propped up the mismanaged administration and challenged international efforts to pursue a peaceful resolution of the current crisis.  Just this week, Secretary Pompeo removed all U.S. diplomatic staff from our embassy in Caracas, citing the “deteriorating situation.”  All things considered, the standoff in Venezuela cannot hold for long. Congress has a critical role to play in America’s response/engagement, not only as the funding authority for military and humanitarian efforts but also through oversight on executive branch decisions