is an honor and privilege to be here today along with the
co-founders and Co-Chairs of the Congressional Taiwan Caucus,
Congressmen Steve Chabot, Sherrod Brown and Dana Rohrabacher
to welcome the 34 member Taiwanese legislative delegation
and representatives of the Taiwan-USA Interparliamentary
Amity Association of the Legislative Yuan (U-AN). I want
to thank all the Members of Congress who are attending today's
event to express their strong support for U.S.-Taiwan relations.
I am especially grateful to Taiwan's Ambassador C.J. Chen
for co-hosting this lunch which brings together legislators
from the United States and Taiwan in an effort
foster and promote increased cooperation and communication
between our two nations. I also want to thank the Chairman
of the Taiwan-USA Interparliamentary Association, Mr. Trong
Chai (Tie), who is a leading proponent for closer U.S.-Taiwan
relations and has played an extraordinary
in organizing this legislative delegation visit to Washington.
Mr. Tie and the interparliamentary association are also
organizing and hosting an upcoming global inter-parliamentary
conference in Taiwan in January 2003. Legislators from around
the globe will be attending the conference including members
of our Congressional Taiwan Caucus. Finally, I want to recognize
Dr. Wu, President of the Formosan Association for Public
Affairs whose assistance and support of the Taiwan Caucus
has been invaluable in strengthening U.S.-Taiwan relations.
has been just over three months, since I joined Mr. Chabot,
Mr. Brown, and Mr. Rohrabacher along with over 80 members
of Congress in forming the Congressional Taiwan Caucus.
At that time we all agreed that there was a need in Washington
to form a caucus that would focus solely on strengthening
America's economic, political, cultural, and strategic relationship
with our democratic ally, Taiwan. Today the Taiwan Caucus
has 114 members and is leading efforts in Congress to promote
and enhance America's iron-clad relationship with Taiwan.
The Caucus has revamped and refocused congressional attention
on U.S. foreign policy issues affecting Taiwan and
East Asia region. The Caucus is also educating Members of
Congress on issues affecting U.S.- Taiwan relations and
is playing an increasingly important role in monitoring
and supporting peaceful cross-strait discussions between
Taipei and Beijing. Finally, this important
organization, as we are witnessing today, serves as a medium
by which legislators from the United States and Taiwan can
formally exchange ideas and policy concerns.
lunch in honor of the Taiwanese legislators is an historic
opportunity to express our unwavering commitment to build
on the special relationship the United States has with the
people and government of Taiwan.
is incumbent on Members of Congress and the Taiwan Caucus
-- in the shadow of September 11-- to strengthen our commitment
to those nations like Taiwan that share our democratic values,
respect for human rights, and who have joined us in our
campaign against international terrorism. The Taiwanese
legislators here in this room today have stood shoulder
to shoulder with the United States and I welcome them to
the United States Congress with great respect and friendship.