This Article reviews The Expanding Role of State and Local Governments in U.S. Foreign Affairs by Earl H. Fry, a book accounting how states and localities are devoting increasing resources to developing their own foreign policy. Fry description is useful and timely, but his allusions to the constitutional basis for a federal monopoly on foreign policy are too summary. As a policy matter, his suggestion for a consensus-driven solution to reconcile competing state and national interests depends on the ability of stakeholders to reach agreements in an increasingly politicized environment, and downplays the importance of foreign actors in these decisions. The book highlights the paradox that states believe they are acting on issues that are both local and foreign in nature, but leaves readers with the question of whether and how a transcendent national interest will evolve.
GW Paper Series
Publius: The Journal of Federalism, Vol. 30, 2000