Dear Senator Corker:
The year 2014 offers each of us an opportunity to make a fresh start. Since you are the ranking Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee you have the opportunity, and too, the responsibility, to assess our country's standing in the world, and as a leader, promote strategies to make the U.S. stronger, more influential, and secure.
One strategy that will clearly make us stronger, more influential, and secure is to embrace policies that promote human rights and the protection of those rights. For, if we speak out about how people should be treated, people around the world will listen. The universality of freedom, equal opportunity, ability to fully participate in civil society need no translation. If we espouse these values people will understand and welcome us. This good will extend beyond human rights to all kind of partnerships into economic and security alliances. And ultimately, these partnerships will result in other countries fervently promoting the values we hold dear. Why? Because other countries think these values have made us what we are. They want to be like us.
That is why we cannot put conditions or limits on how we view the rights of persons with disabilities. The Americans with Disabilities Act is our beacon, a beacon the world has adopted through the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. We must ratify it. Please take the long view. Please lead your colleagues to ratification in a strong bipartisan vote. You have the power to do that. Ratification under those terms will make the world a better place and your role in this important time in history will be recorded.