Roundup: The impact of the elections on global health and development

With the results of the presidential and congressional elections now almost two days behind us, there has been increasing reaction and speculation about what President Barack Obama’s second term and new congressional leadership could mean for foreign policy, international development, and global health. Below, we provide a round-up of some of the most interesting reads in the wake of the election results.

  • Devex examines if Obama’s re-election is a “boon for US foreign aid.” While “Obama’s win is good news for the US Agency for International Development (USAID), which could have faced deep budget cuts in a Republican administration,” questions still “linger” over leadership. “Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is not expected to stay for more than a few months into Obama’s second term, if at all. Some Washington insiders also suggest that USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah is interested in pursuing a political career sooner rather than later.”
  • According to the US Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC), the election has resulted in “broad bipartisan support for America’s global leadership and the International Affairs Budget,” although there are “challenges ahead to reconcile commitments to development and diplomacy with the need to address America’s fiscal crisis.” USGLC provides a detailed look at the new players in Washington and the likely playing field for the 113th Congress.
  • The Center for Global Development identifies the “five things that should be at the top of the President’s global health agenda for the next four years.”  These priorities include the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, strengthening global health partnerships, and sustainability.
  • Both National Journal and Foreign Policy examine how Rep. Howard Berman’s (D-CA) loss and a new Republican chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee will shake up the foreign policy leadership in Congress. National Journal reports that one day “after the election ensured Republicans will keep their majority in the next Congress, Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) made his first public play to secure the chairmanship of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.” And according to Foreign Policy, “Berman will be remembered for his decades of tireless work on foreign policy and his reputation as a legislator who sought to build consensus to push forward a bipartisan agenda.”
  • Pharmalot looks at what the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will look like after the election results have settled. “Apart from an occasional reference, the agency is not part of the campaign dialogue.” However, the FDA will still be affected by the looming sequester, which would leave the agenda with about $320 million less to spend in Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 than it did in FY 2012. Pharmalot also examines what could happen to FDA leadership in the coming months.

Kim Lufkin is the GHTC’s communications officer. 

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