Seth Moulton ’97 announced his bid for presidency on Monday, April 22. In his campaign, Moulton has advocated for the strengthening of national security and a more comprehensive approach to foreign policy.
According to Matt Corridoni, National Press Secretary for Seth Moulton for America, Moulton’s main focuses for his campaign are foreign policy and national security, issues that the campaign finds President Donald Trump weak in.
“[Moulton] thinks these are issues that affect everyone’s day to day life, that are not being talked about right now in the debates, and Democrats have a real opportunity to reclaim this issue,” said Corridoni in a phone interview with The Phillipian.
A Buzzfeed article from February 11 shared the news that Moulton was considering a run for presidency. According to Corridoni, in the process of deciding whether or not he wanted to pursue a presidential campaign, Moulton wrote an entire foreign policy plan that he shared in his speech at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C. He divided his plan into three main categories: arms, arm control, and alliances.
In talking first about arms, Moulton expressed that the United States has been disproportionately channeling resources into investments in physical weapons, as opposed to new technology.
In his speech, Moulton said, “Today, we face great power competition from two adversaries like we haven’t seen since the lead-up to World War II, and we run the serious risk of being entirely leapfrogged by China and Russia with new technologies.”
Moulton also covered arms control, and suggested that while arms control can make a nation safer, regulation also, more importantly, gives a nation a “strategic advantage.” Furthermore, Moulton focused on alliances, discussing the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (N.A.T.O.) and troop placement in other countries. He also emphasized the pertinence of climate change.
“Climate change won’t wait, and neither should we. It’s a threat to our national security. We obviously need to get back into the Paris Accord, but that alone isn’t enough. The time to act is now, and new alliances to prevent it are a good place to start,” said Moulton in his speech.
Moulton’s stress on foreign policy and national security stems from his own experiences as a member of the Marines, with which he served as from 2001 to 2008 in Baghdad.
This experience inspired him to run for Congress, where he earned his seat in the House of Representatives in 2015. Though Moulton did not agree with the war he fought in, he was able to find purpose in his role as a Marines.
“I also realized that I loved serving—having a job with a purpose much bigger than myself—and I enjoyed going to work every day to serve our country. Even in the midst of a war I disagreed with, I was able to impact the lives of other people every single day,” said Moulton.
However, Moulton did feel “betrayed” by the government in Washington, according to a video from his campaign.
He reiterated this idea in his foreign policy speech when he said, “playing politics with war and foreign policy takes on a whole new meaning when you know some of the people who die as a result.”
In general, Moulton hopes to bring awareness to how certain flaws of the government are now surfacing amidst weak implementations of foreign policy and national security.
“Decades of division and corruption have broken our democracy, and robbed Americans of their voice. It’s all led to an administration that’s turned away from our values and is shredding our moral authority,” he stated in the campaign video.
Moulton ended his foreign policy speech by emphasizing, once again, the importance of tackling the three areas of focus he proposed.
“It’s time to completely re-imagine our arms, our alliances, and our arms control for this new and rapidly changing world. All three are indispensable to meet the challenges of the new world order, which emphasizes the importance of an all-hands-on-deck approach to national security. Russia and China have embraced this; terrorist groups embody it. But here in America, we have regressed,” said Moulton.