Statement of Judge Edward C. Prado before Senate Committee on Foreign Relations

Statement of Judge Edward C. Prado Nominee to be U.S. Ambassador to the Argentine Republic Senate Committee on Foreign Relations

March 7, 2018

Members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee:

It is an honor to appear before you today as the President’s nominee to be the United States Ambassador to the Argentine Republic.  I must say it is a rather awkward position for me because as an appellate judge I am used to being the one behind the bench asking the questions rather answering them.  Be that as it may, I hope to assure you that my career as a judge, my work ethic, and my resolve make me well qualified to be America’s voice in Argentina.  I thank President Trump for his confidence in me and for this opportunity.  And I thank Secretary Rex Tillerson for supporting my nomination.

I am here today with my wife of 44 years, Maria.  She has been my strongest supporter throughout my life and in this new endeavor.  She understands that there is an important role for the spouse of an Ambassador and is eager to take on that responsibility.  We are a team.  Our son, Edward could not join us today but is very enthusiastic about this opportunity for his father.

My career has prepared me well for this new responsibility.  As a federal judge I listened, I gathered information, I analyzed it carefully, and ultimately had the responsibility to make difficult decisions.  I understood that with the title of judge came power and respect.  But with that power and respect also came a responsibility to do what the law demanded regardless of the consequences.  Likewise, the title of Ambassador carries with it a great deal of prestige, but with that prestige also comes a great responsibility to represent the United States of America.  My goal will be to earn the respect that comes with the title of Ambassador and to represent our country to the best of my ability.

I also realize that while I might serve as the face of the court, there are dozens of persons behind the scenes that make sure that the court functions smoothly.  The same is true of an Embassy.  While I might be the face of the Embassy, I understand that we are a team and many dedicated employees are behind the scenes making sure that America is properly represented.  An embassy is only as strong as those who make it function, from the Ambassador to the consular section, to the people working in the cafeteria; we are a team working together with the same goals, the same mission.

I have had the opportunity to travel to Argentina on numerous occasions.  I have made presentations and participated in workshops across Argentina and have made friends among the Argentine legal community.  I know how important the rule of law is and how important a strong, independent judicial branch can be to a country if it is to be a solid democracy.  My intent is to continue working with the lawyers and judges of Argentina in improving the judicial system and strengthening the confidence the people have in the judicial system.

As a former prosecutor, I appreciate the efforts of our law enforcement agencies to make our country and the world a safer place for all citizens.  It is my intent to fully support United States law enforcement agency efforts in supporting Argentine law enforcement and their fight against crime.  I am committed to helping build capacity within the Argentine police to promote security in a vital regional ally.

As a son of a World War II veteran and myself a retired Army reservist, I appreciate the importance of a strong military and our commitment to a democratic world free from the threat of terrorism.  Our support of the Argentine military must continue.

I also hope to work closely on commercial and economic issues to increase opportunities for U.S. business in Argentina.  I will work to further enhance our bilateral trade relationship.  Argentina is the eighth largest country in the world by land area, and has a powerful and diverse economy.  While the country has no doubt dealt with its share of economic challenges, the current Macri administration has established wide-reaching reforms seeking to strengthen Argentina’s markets and its position in the global economic community.  I intend to work closely with the Argentine administration to not only assist them in these efforts but to strengthen mutually beneficial trade and commerce between our two nations.

I look forward to enhancing our continuing friendship and partnership with a close ally.  Through our efforts, we can strengthen peace and prosperity in both countries and I look forward to representing the United States on the global stage.