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American Exceptionalism.

In his much anticipated speech at the Ronald Reagan Library on September 27, 2011, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie advocated a foreign policy based on "American Exceptionalism." Christie opined that "one of the most powerful forms of foreign policy is the example we set." If we lead by example, he suggested, others in the world will follow.

Christie is being urged to join the race for the Republican presidential nomination, and this was his first major statement on foreign policy. The speech was full of platitudes and principles, but short on specifics. America, he said, must once again become a beacon of hope and a shining example to other nations. We must improve our image in the world. We need strong leadership and a healthy economy because "our economic health is a national security issue."

He cited President Reagan's handling of the PATCO strike as an example of how domestic decisions and policies can influence foreign policy. Reagan's actions showed the world, Christie noted, that he was a principled and decisive leader.

Christie lamented the lack of courage and leadership in Washington, and contrasted it with his experience in New Jersey.

If Christie decides to run for President, he will have to get much more specific about his foreign policy ideas. Platitudes are not enough and should not serve as a guide to U.S. foreign policy. Governments around the world act according to their perceptions of their national interests, not the example set by America.

Perhaps Christie's strongest point was his recognition that domestic policy and actions, for good or ill, influence U.S. foreign policy.

By Chris Christie, Governor of New Jersey

Text: http://www.reaganfoundation.org/PDF/chrischristiespeech.pdf

Reviewed by Francis P. Sempa, Contributing Editor

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Author:Sempa, Francis P
Publication:American Diplomacy
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 19, 2011
Words:289
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