tv British Prime Minister Theresa May Addresses Congressional Republicans CSPAN January 26, 2017 5:18pm-5:56pm EST
here for their retreat which ends tomorrow. they heard earlier today from british prime minister, theresa may. she was introduced by cathy mcmorris rodgers of washington state. [applause] >> nearly every day we walked to vote for meetings in the capital , we passed by one of america's greatest friends in freedom lawyer. former british prime minister winston churchill. reads, on theit days to come, the british and american people will for their own safety and the good of all walk together side-by-side in majesty, injustice, and in
peace. prime minister may joins us at a time of renewed opportunity or both the united states and the united kingdom and continuing to walk side-by-side. her decision to visit america soon after our presidential election was a signal of her commitment to strengthen the special relationship our countries enjoy. it is my honor to welcome from number 10 downing street, the first foreign head of state to visit an address our retreat, the honorable theresa may. [applause]
prime min. may: thank you. for that very much fantastic welcome. can i say majority leader mcconnell, mr. speaker, distinguished members of the senate, and representatives of the house, thank you to congress and the congressional institute for being here today. the opportunity to visit the united states is always special. to be invited to be the first serving head of government to address this important conference is an honor indeed. -- any person can travel to this country at any by itsd not be inspired promise and its example. more than two centuries, the idea of america drawn from form from agiven
small hole, not far from here, has lit up the world. that idea that all are created equal and that all are born free, has never been surpassed in the long history of political thought. [applause] it is here on the streets and in the halls of this great city of philadelphia that the founding fathers first set it down. the textbook of freedom was written. grew from nation that sea to shining sea was born. since that day, it has been america's destiny to bear the leadership of the free world and to carry that heavy responsibility on his shoulders.
united kingdom of great britain and northern ireland has been proud to share that burden and to walk alongside you at every stage. [applause] prime min. may: for the past andury, britain and america the unique and special relationship that exists between us, has taken the idea conceived by 56 ordinary citizens, has president reagan called them, forward. time and again it is the relationship between us that has
defined the modern world. april, it wasthis your intervention in the first britain, that helped france, our friends in the commonwealth, and other allies to maintain freedom in europe. [applause] a little more: than 75 years ago, you responded to the japanese attack on pearl harbor by joining britain in the second world war and defeating fascism, not just in the pacific, but in africa and you're up to. [applause] later, in the: twormath of these wars, are countries led the west through the cold war, confronting communism and ultimately defeating it, not just through military might, but by winning the war of ideas and by proving
that open, liberal, democratic decided will always be those that are closed and cruel. [applause] the leadership provided by our dues countries to the special relationship has done more to win wars and overcome adversity, it made the modern world. the institutions on which that world relies were so often conceived or inspired by our two nations working together. the united nations, in need of reform, but vital still, has its foundation in the special relationship. from the original declaration of st. james's palace to what was signed in washington. andinston churchill president franklin d roosevelt.
the world bank and international monetary fund born in the post world war world, but conceded by our two nations working together. of theo, the cornerstone west, it was established on the bonds of trust and mutual interest that exist between us. some of these organizations are in need of reform. and renewal to make them relevant to our needs today. we should be proud of the role that are two nations working in partnership plate and bringing them into being and to bringing to thend prosperity people of the world as a result. [applause] prime min. may: it is through our actions over many years, evil,g together to defeat that we have been able to fulfill the promise of those who
first spoke of the special nature of the relationship between us. the promise of freedom, liberty, and the rights of man. we must never cease, churchill said, to proclaim the great principles of freedom and the rights of man, which are the joint inheritance of the english speaking world and which, through magna carta, the bill of rights, habeas corpus, trial by jury, and the english common law, finds their most famous expression in the american declaration of independence. [applause] prime min. may: so it is my honor and privilege to stand before you today in this great city of philadelphia to playing -- proclaim them again, to join hands as we pick up that mantle of leadership once more, to renew our special relationship
and to recommit ourselves to the responsibility of leadership in the modern world. it is my honor and privilege to do so at this time, as dawn breaks on a new era of american renewal. i speak you not just as prime minister of the united kingdom, but as a fellow conservative who believes in the same principles that underpin the agenda of your party. the value of liberty, the dignity of work, the principles of nationhood, family, economic prudence, patriotism, and putting power in the hands of the people. principles instilled in me from a young age. principles my parents taught me in southern england. and i know it is these principles that you have put at the heart of your plan for government and your victory in these elections gives you the
opportunity to put them at the heart of this new era of american renewal. president trump's victory, achieved in defiance of all of polls, and and the rooted not in the core doors of -- core doors of washington, but in the hopes and aspirations of working men and women across the land, you're part of his victory, where you swept all before you, secured with great effort and achieved with an important message of national renewal. and because of this, because of what you have done together, because of that great victory, america can be stronger, greater, and more confident in the years ahead. [applause] and a newly emboldened,
confident america is good for the world. an america that is strong and prosperous at home is a nation that can lead abroad. you cannot and should not do so alone. you have said this is time for others to step up and i agree. sovereign countries cannot outsource their security and prosperity to america. they should not undermine the alliances that keep us strong by failing to step up and play their part. this is something -- [applause] prime min. may: this is something britain has always understood. it is why britain is the only country in the g 20 to meet its commitments to spend 2% of gdp on defense and invest 20% of that in upgrading equipment. [applause] it is why britain is the only
two spent that g 20 -- to spend .7% of income on overseas development. it is why my act as prime minister was to lead the debate in parliament for nuclear deterrence and why the government i lead would increase spending on defense and every year of parliament. it is why -- [applause] it is why britain is a leading member, alongside the united states, of the coalition working successfully to defeat daesh, why we have sent troops in estonia and poland as part of the troops in eastern europe. while we are increasing troops contributions to defend the afghan government from terrorism. and it is why we are reinforcing our commitment to peacekeeping operations in kosovo, south sudan, and somalia. and it is why britain is leading
the way in pioneering international efforts to crack down on modern slavery. one of the great scourges of our world, wherever it is found. [applause] i hope you will join us in that cause. i commend senator corker for his work in this field. it is good to have met him here today. as americans know, the united kingdom is by instinct and history a great global nation that recognizes its responsibilities to the world. as we end our membership of the european union, as the british people voted with determination and quiet resolve to do last year, we have the opportunity to reassert our belief in a confident, sovereign, and global britain, ready to build relationships with old friends and new allies. we will build a new partnership
with our friends in europe. we are not turning our back on them or the interests and values we share. it remains overwhelmingly in our interest and in those of the wide world that the eu should succeed. for as long as we remain members, we will continue to play our full part, just as we will cooperate on security, foreign policy, and trade once we have left. but we have chosen a different future for our country. a future that sees us restore our parliamentary sovereignty and national self-determination. and to become even more global. [applause] and to become even more global and internationalist in action and in spirit. a future that sees us take control of the things that matter to us, like our national
borders and immigration policy, and the way we interpret our own laws so we are able to shape a better, more prosperous future for the working men and women of britain. a future that sees a step up -- sees us step up with confidence to a new, even more internationalist role, where we meet our responsibilities to friends and allies, champion the cooperation and partnership that projects our values around the world. and continue to act as one of the strongest and most forceful advocates for business, free markets, and free trade anywhere around the globe. this is a vision of a future my country can unite around and that i hope your country, as our closest friend and ally, can welcome and support. so, as we rediscover our confidence together. as you renew your nation, as we do ours, we have the opportunity
, indeed the responsibility to renew the special relationship to this new age. we have the opportunity to lead together again. because the world is passing through a period of change and in response to that change, we can either be passive bystanders, or take the opportunity to lead and to lead together. i believe it is in our national interest to do so. the world is increasingly marked by instability and threats that risk undermining our way of life and the very things we hold dear. the end of the cold war did not give rise to a new world order , it did not herald the end of history or lead to a new age of peace, prosperity and predictability. for some, the citizens of
central and eastern europe in particular, it brought new freedom. but across the world, ancient ethnic, national, and religious rivalries that had been frozen through the decades of the cold war, returned. new enemies of the west and our values, in particular in the form of radical islamists, have emerged. countries with little tradition of democracy, liberty, and human rights, notably china and russia have grown more assertive in world affairs. the rise of the asian economy, india but countries like too, is hugely welcome. indians are being lifted out of poverty and new markets are opening up. these events, coming as they have at the same time as the financial crisis, and a loss of confidence in the west following
9/11 and difficult military interventions in iraq and afghanistan have led many to fear that in this century we will experience the eclipse of the west. but there is nothing inevitable about that. other countries may grow stronger. we -- big populous countries may grow richer. as they do so, they may embrace more fully our values of democracy and liberty. even if they do not, our interests will remain. our values will endure. the need to defend them and project them will be as important as ever. so, we, our country's, have a responsibility to lead. when others step up as we step back, it is bad for america, for britain, and the world. [applause]
prime min. may: it is in our interest, those of britain and america together, to stand strong together and defend our values, interests, and the very da's in which we believe. ideas in which we believe. this cannot mean a return to the failed policies of the past. the days of britain and america intervening in sovereign countries to remake the world in our own image are over. nor can we afford to stand idly by when the threat is real and in our own interest to intervene. we must be strong, smart, and hardheaded. and we must demonstrate the resolve necessary to stand up for our interests. and whether it is the security east,ael and the middle or the baltic states in eastern europe, we must stand up for our friends and allies in democratic countries that find themselves
in tough neighborhoods too. [applause] prime min. may: we each have different political traditions. we will sometimes pursue different domestic policies and there may be occasions we in which we disagree. but the common values and interests that bring us together are hugely powerful and, as your foremost friend and ally, we support many of the priorities your government has laid out for engagement with the world. it is why i join you in your determination to take on and defeat daesh and the ideology of inspiresextremism that them and many other terrorist groups in the world today. it is in both of our interests to do so.
it will require us to use the intelligence provided by the finest security agencies in the world and it will require the use of military might. it also demands a larger effort. one of the lessons of fighting terrorism in the last 15 years is, yes killing terrorists can save innocent lives, but until we kill the idea that drives them, the ideology, we will always have to live with this threat. [applause] prime min. may: as they are defeated on the ground, the terrorists are exploiting the internet to spread this ideology, that is preying on vulnerable citizens in our countries, inspiring them to commit acts of terror in our own cities. that is why the u.k. has led the world in developing a strategy for preventing violent extremism
and why the british and american governments are working together to take on and defeat the ideology of islamist extremism. i look forward to working with the administration to defeat this evil ideology. but we should be careful to distinguish between this extreme ideology and the peaceful religion of islam and hundreds of millions of adherence, including millions of our own citizens, and those further field who are so often the first victims of this ideology's terror. and nor is it enough to focus on violent extremism. we need to address the spectrum of extremism, starting with the bigotry and hatred that can turn to violence. yet ultimately to defeat daesh,
we must employ all of the diplomatic means at our disposal. that means working to secure a political solution in syria, and challenging the alliance of the syrian regime and its backers in tehran. when it comes to russia, it is wise to turn to the example of president reagan, who used to abide by the adage trust, but verify. [applause] with president putin, my advice is to engage, but beware. [applause] prime min. may: there is nothing inevitable about conflict between russia and the west and nothing unavoidable about retreating to the days of the cold war. but we should engage with russia from a position of strength and
build the relationship, systems, and processes that make cooperation more likely than conflict. and that, particularly after the illegal annexation of crimea, give assurance to russia's neighboring states and their security is not in question. we should not jeopardize the freedoms that reagan and thatcher run to europe by excepting putin's claim that it is now his spear of influence. [applause] prime min. may: progress on this issue would also help secure a number of his nation's priorities.
to reduce the influence in the middle east. for the u.k.ority to as we support our allies from the gulf states. to build an ark of influence from tehran to the mediterranean. the nuclear deal with tehran is controversial. it has seen iran remove 30,000 centrifuges along with andciated infrastructure eliminate stocking enriched uranium. that was by lee important for regional security. rigorouslynt was policed. to deal with the threats of the modern world, we need to rebuild its -- confidence in the institutions in which we all rely. that means multinational
institutions, because we know level terrorism, climate change, organized crime, mass movements of people -- do not respect national borders. multinationalrds , they need to work for the country that form them and serve the needs and interests of the people of those nations. they have no democratic mandate of their own. former agenda. -- i call on others to join us in the effort and to ensure they step up and contribute, as they should.
that is why i have encouraged gutierrez to focus on the united nations on core functions of peacekeeping, conflict prevention, and resolution. raised with my fellow european leaders, the need to deliver on a commitment to spend 2% of gdp on defense and 20% of their defense on the budget. need to make sure the alliance is equipped to fit cyber wherefore -- cyber warfare as well as regular forms of war. leadership in nato supported by britain must be the central element around which the alliance is built. alongside this continued commitment, i also fear that eu nations must similarly set up to ensure this institution that provides the cornerstone of the west defense continues to be as
effective as it can be. the most important institution is, and should always be, the nationstate. some nations form strong institutions, and they form the basis of the international partnerships and cooperation that bring stability to our world. nations accountable to their populations, deriving as the declaration of independence puts it, they're just hours from the consent of the government. can choose to join international organizations or not. they can choose to cooperate with others, or not. they can choose to trade with others, or not. which is why did the countries of the eu choose to integrate further, they should be free to choose so, because that is what they choose. but britain, as a sovereign
nation, but a different and political cultural history has chosen to take a different path. because our history and culture is profoundly internationalist. european country and proud of our shared european heritage. but we are also a country that is always looked the on europe to the wider world. we have ties of family, kinship, and history to countries like india, pakistan, australia, new zealand, canada, and across the world. ofcourse, we have ties kinship, language, and culture, to these united states to. [applause] it, we speakput the same language, neil at the same alters, and to a very large seek the same ideals. ,oday, we have strong economic
commercial, defense, and political relationships as well. i'm delighted that the new administration has made an trade agreement with our country one of its earliest priorities. [applause] a new trade deal between britain and america must work for both sides and serve both of our national interests. it would help to grow our respective economies, and provide the high paid jobs of the future for working people across america and the u.k.. havest work for those who too often felt left behind by globalization. that rely on modest incomes while living in countries like our own elect the global system of free markets and free trade is not working
for them in its current firm. such a deal, i like to be reforms we're making to our own economy, to ensure wealth and opportunity is spread across our land, can demonstrate to those who feel left out and left hind freefree markets, economies, and free trade can deliver the brighter future they need. they can maintain, and indeed, build the rules for an international system on which there world continues to rely. the u.k. is already's america's largest export destination. from theo the u.k. state of pennsylvania alone account for more than $2 billion a year. -- u.k. somebody from pennsylvania. [laughter] prime min. may: the u.k. is the
-- int market in the you the eu. america is the largest single destination and single largest investor in the u.k.. your companies are investing or expanding in the u.k. at the rate of more than 10 projects a week. people companies employ in every u.s. state, from texas to vermont. u.s. and u.k. expense relationship is the most the dance of any to -- two countries. of course, we have recently -- in then the new f5 new aircraft and aircraft carriers that will increase our ability to protect our power across the world years to come. it helps that strong economic and commercial links and are shared history. i look forward to pursuing talks
with president trump and his administration about a new trade agreement in the coming months. work, butke detailed we welcome your openness to these discussions. i hope we can make progress so that the new global britain that emerges after brexit is even better equipped to take its place competently in the world. [applause] such ann. may: agreement would see us taking that next step in the special relationship that exists between us. greatest one of the forces for progress this world has ever known. in 1946, churchill proposed a new phase in this relationship. to win a cold war that many had not even realized had started. curtainibed how an iron had fallen from the baltic to the adriano, covering all the
ancient andthe eastern europe. the anti-, budapest, belgrade, bucharest. cities, homesreat of great culture and heritage, live in freedom and peace. they do so because of the leadership of britain and america and of mrs. thatcher and president reagan. [applause] prime min. may: they do so ultimately because our ideas will always prevail. they do so because when the world the man's leadership, it is this alliance of values and interests, this special relationship between two countries, that is to borrow the words of another great american
statesman, enter the arena with our faces bar with dust, sweat, and blood, to strive valiantly and know the triumph of achievement. as we renew the promise of our nation to make them stronger at home, in the words of president reagan, as a sleeping giant stirs, so let us renew the relationship that can lead the world towards the promise of freedom and prosperity marked out in parchment by those ordinary citizens 200 and 40 -- 240 years ago. we may not be counted with the , but with those who strive to do the deed that will lead us to a better world. that better future is within reach. together we can build it. a few.
[applause] -- thank you. [applause] announcer: prime minister theresa may will be the first foreign leader to meet with president donald trump. their joint news conference is scheduled for tomorrow. we will bring that to you on the c-span network. this conference, she was answering questions about her meeting with president trump. >> questions for the prime minister? prime min. may: as the response from the whole house showed