WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI), along with a bipartisan coalition of members, announced the formation of the AUKUS Working Group to highlight Congressional interest in ensuring success of the trilateral AUKUS agreement. The Working Group will be co-chaired by Reps. Gallagher, Joe Courtney (D-CT), Blake Moore (R-UT), and Derek Kilmer (D-WA)—members who already have a deep experience in collaborating with America’s counterparts in the new AUKUS alliance.
Reps. Courtney and Gallagher currently co-chair the bipartisan Congressional Friends of Australia Caucus, and Rep. Kilmer serves the as co-chair of the Congressional U.K. Caucus. Now, the AUKUS Working Group will provide a forum for congressional attention on the implementation of AUKUS and on completing the steps needed to strengthen our already-existing security relationship.
“AUKUS is a critical new partnership that should be at the forefront of our security architecture in the Indo-Pacific. While submarine technology sharing will be critical, AUKUS must not be limited to one domain. The AUKUS working group will play a key role in advancing the partnership across a variety of fronts with the sense of urgency that the moment deserves. I am proud to join my colleagues in this critical effort and I look forward to getting to work,” said Rep. Gallagher.
“For more than 70 years, the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom have worked together to protect our common values and promote security and prosperity throughout the world. Now, as the strength of the international rule of law is being tested unlike it has in generations, the AUKUS agreement represents yet another critical partnership to strengthen our defense and security relationship to bolster our capabilities and deliver on our promise of ensuring maritime, technology, industrial base, and supply chain security in the Indo-Pacific region. The Working Group will work tirelessly to identify avenues of continued cooperation and enlist Congress to enable this agreement legislatively so there are no impediments to its successful implementation,” said Rep. Courtney. “The co-chairs of this group have identified themselves as strong supporters of strengthening security partnership in the Indo-Pacific, and I look forward to working with them to advance this unique alliance.”
“The partnership between the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia helped lay the foundation for the free world for nearly a century,” said Rep. Moore. “Our shared history includes ending the First World War and defeating the axis powers and communism. Now, this critical alliance faces another foe. The Chinese hegemony’s appetite for power and control now threatens regional stability and international order. Delivering an Australian nuclear submarine without cost-overruns and delivery delays establishes a key deterrent against the CCP’s ambitions for global dominance. Beyond an enormous deterrent value, AUKUS will sustain peace and prosperity across the globe as this partnership expands beyond simply defense. I look forward to this Working Group’s role in providing robust congressional support for the AUKUS Alliance.”
“If the past few months on the international stage have shown us anything, it’s that our strategic alliances and partnerships with key allies across the globe are more important than ever. That includes the United States’ continued effort to work with critical allies, the United Kingdom and Australia, to strengthen our security partnership in the Indo-Pacific,” said Rep. Kilmer. “I look forward to continuing to work the Chairman Courtney and my bipartisan colleagues in the House to support this critical alliance.”
On September 15, 2021, joint leaders of the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom announced the creation of AUKUS to enhance each country’s shared commitment to international security, and deepen diplomatic, security, and defense cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region. Since then, Joint Steering Groups have regularly met to continue their progress in implementing the agreement and to discuss additional opportunities on a range of critical capabilities and technologies.