Human Freedom and Democracy

Reflecting the commitment of the McCain family going back generations, the McCain Institute is dedicated to advancing human rights and human dignity as universal values. As we see it, promoting human freedom and democracy is not only part of our core values as a country and a people – it is also a core national interest.

With that in mind, the McCain Institute seeks to promote the integration of human rights policies into broader national security and foreign policy strategies.

By convening stakeholders from various communities– from military to NGOs, from human rights advocates to major corporations, from foreign activists to U.S. government officials – we seek to build common understanding of human rights challenges and our common responsibilities in addressing them.

The promotion of human rights also plays a critical role across the full range of activities of the Institute. We have:

  • Included human rights activists within our Next Generation Leaders program;
  • Established a human rights panel as a regular part of our annual Sedona Forum;
  • Highlighted human rights issues and experts as part of our Debate and Decision Series;
  • Hosted human rights activists for targeted programming across the United States.

The McCain Institute’s Decision Theater will play a growing role in the Institute’s efforts to promote human rights. By developing comparative models illustrating a comprehensive picture of U.S. and international engagement with selected countries, we will be able to demonstrate the relative role human rights support plays in such engagement.

Our goal is to stimulate policy debate among decision-makers on how to increase support for human rights as part of overall strategies – whether by increasing resources directed to human rights, or leveraging other, larger parts of our overall relationships.

“Our values are our interests, and our interests are our values.”

-- Senator John McCain