Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary general of NATO, delivered a historic speech at The Heritage Foundation about the value NATO brings to American national security in the 21st century. Stoltenberg spoke of the more than 1,000 NATO personnel lost in the War on Terror to illustrate our allies’ commitment to freedom and security.

When the Secretary General began his term in 2014, the alliance’s obligations were underfunded by European governments. The Secretary General commended President Trump’s outspokenness on the subject, saying it resulted in a $40 Billion increase in European contributions, with pledges to fulfill obligations by 2024.

Secretary General Stoltenberg gave this landmark speech here to demonstrate NATO’s value in our challenging times and to reaffirm that commitment to America. After his speech, Heritage Executive Vice President Kim Holmes moderated a vigorous Q&A session in which Heritage experts joined national reporters to get the Secretary General’s take on the big challenges facing the alliance.

Without your support, we would not attract such distinguished foreign dignitaries. This speech highlights Heritage’s leading role in the conservative movement, which is all because of you.

Will your view on NATO change now that other countries are playing their part?

For the time being, we are all stuck with Obamacare. The law, enacted eight and a half years ago on Sunday, will probably be giving the same birthday present it has given millions of Americans in every previous year: higher premiums and fewer coverage options.

Heritage expert Edmund Haislmaier written a state-by-state summary of what Obamacare has done to consumer choice and costs.. You can find what’s happened in your home state here.

The bad news is that, overall, Obamacare has more than doubled  average premium costs for individual insurance  in the first four years. The good news is that Heritage has not given up pointing out the flaws and costs of Obamacare—and we have partnered with fellow conservatives to propose a better option.

The Heritage Foundation has helped develop the Health Care Choices Proposal, which would end the Affordable Care Act’s regular premium increases and allow states to fix the policy that the federal government got wrong.

Heritage experts are keeping an eye on what comes next as Obamacare gets even worse with age. Thanks to you, our experts have an alternative waiting for the day that that Congress is ready to act.

How will this round of Obamacare premium increases impact your family?

The Heritage Foundation’s already substantial work on budget policy just got a tremendous boost. Thanks to a grant from the Grover Hermann Foundation, Heritage will be creating the Grover M. Hermann Center for the Federal Budget. The gracious trustees at the Grover Hermann Foundation have supported Heritage for many years, and now their contribution will be memorialized as we continue this vital work.

The new center will be housed in the Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies. The Roe Institute has a long history of producing groundbreaking research and bold policy recommendations.  Just one example of that: our Blueprint for Balance which detailed exactly how Congress could cut spending by hundreds of billions of dollars and put the government on track to end deficit spending in just seven years.

Grover M. Hermann was an exemplary conservative who stood for free enterprise and founded American Marietta Corporation, which is now Lockheed Martin. As a philanthropist, Mr. Hermann championed change through generous donations.

The new Grover M. Hermann Center for the Federal Budget was created with a $5 million grant from The Hermann Foundation. Grover Hermann’s dedication to conservative principles will live on, as the center will tackle the pressing budget issues of our time.

The creation of this research center will play a key role in The Heritage Foundation’s efforts to enact conservative reform in the federal budget process. Preserving the American ideals of hard work, prosperity, and liberty for our members is why we are here. Thank you for trusting us with that responsibility.

What changes would you like to see to the federal budget process?

It has been a remarkable news week, as Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser revealed her identity and we heard more about her allegations about Kavanaugh’s conduct as a teenager. There is still much that we don’t know, and so we’ll confine ourselves to saying only what  do know.

We know that Judge Kavanaugh has a distinguished conservative record–and Heritage supports conservative judges ascending to the Supreme Court.

We  know that the American Bar Association, which usually gives conservatives low marks where they can, gave Kavanaugh its highest, “well qualified” rating—and commended his integrity and outstanding character .

For a more detailed update, listen to SCOTUS 101’s interview with Judicial Crisis Network’s Carrie Severino here:

We also know that Judge Kavanaugh has successfully passed six FBI background check investigations.

And that women who have known him since high school and clerks who have worked for him over the years have vouched for his character and integrity in public testimony.

Finally, we know that his opposition has been over the top—so much so that liberal Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg condemned the recent confirmation process as a “highly partisan show” and “wrong.”

As the hearings are likely to continue before the Senate Judiciary Committee, we will keep you updated as the process unfolds. The evidence currently shows that Judge Kavanaugh is a man of character, who should be confirmed by the Senate. Thank you for trusting The Heritage Foundation with the responsibility, and for your steadfast support.

What do you think about the new developments in the Kavanaugh hearings?

As President Reagan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation from extinction.” Sure enough, a generation after his presidency, economic freedom suddenly has fallen out of favor with young people, largely because of left-wing dominance on America’s campuses and in our popular culture.

In this video, Heritage sends young people a simple message about capitalism: you need it to survive. Of course, capitalism needs young people too, or both will fail. That is why The Heritage Foundation is launching the speakers series “Free Markets: The Ethical Economic Choice” to remind young people about the blessings of liberty.

The series will illustrate that no other system has lifted more people out of poverty or better empowered them to pursue their dreams. Dr. Walter Williams, the John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics at George Mason University, kicked off this series, with more distinguished speakers to come.

We have the ability to share the best minds with a new generation because of your steadfast support. Thank you for standing with us as we preserve economic freedom for the next generation of Americans.

Watch Dr. Williams speak here.

What is the best way to show young Americans the importance of economic freedom?

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