Statement on “The Richard G. Lugar and Ellen O. Tauscher Act to Maintain Limits on Russian Nuclear Forces”

Statement signed by NTI Co-Chair and CEO Ernest J. Moniz, Co-Chair Sam Nunn, Admiral Michael Mullen (USN, ret.), Former Secretary of Defense William Perry, Former Secretary of State George Shultz

“We commend the bipartisan leadership of House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel and Ranking Member Michael McCaul for their co-sponsorship of ‘The Richard G. Lugar and Ellen O. Tauscher Act to Maintain Limits on Russian Nuclear Forces.’ 

 “This important bill expresses strong bipartisan support for the extension of the New START Treaty until 2026, or until the United States and Russia have entered into a new arms control agreement to replace New START that provides equal or greater constraints, transparency and verification measures regarding Russian and U.S. nuclear forces. 

“Extension of New START will ensure that Russia and the United States maintain verifiable limits on their strategic nuclear weapons and delivery systems; exchange data about their strategic nuclear forces; and keep boots on the ground through on-site inspections. Maintaining this important guardrail will provide a critical foundation of restraint and predictability upon which both countries should take additional steps to reduce the risk of nuclear use and continue the process of verifiable nuclear reductions.  

“This bill reflects the spirit of non-partisan cooperation to advance common-sense legislation and policies to enhance the security of all Americans. In so doing, it exemplifies and honors the words, deeds and legacies of the two remarkable legislators for which it is named–our dear friends, colleagues and former NTI Board Members Dick Lugar and Ellen Tauscher.

“Nothing would honor their memories more meaningfully than to have this legislation enacted into law with strong bipartisan support in the House and Senate, and for President Trump and President Putin to agree to extend New START through 2026. With that foundation securely in place, they should pursue additional steps to reduce nuclear risks and enhance strategic stabilitygoals Dick Lugar and Ellen Tauscher pursued relentlessly in Congress and throughout their distinguished careers.”  

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