DATA Ad Says $4.7B in International Aid Cut From House FY 2005 Budget Will Hurt AIDS Spending, Calls for Restoration
The debt, AIDS and trade advocacy group DATA on Wednesday began airing radio advertisements in House Budget Committee Chair Jim Nussle's (R-Iowa) legislative district calling for the restoration of $4.7 billion in international aid that Nussle cut from President Bush's proposed fiscal year 2005 foreign aid budget, the Washington Post reports (Weisman, Washington Post, 3/18). The radio spots, which cost $5,000 total, encourage Nussle's constituents in Dubuque, Waterloo, the Quad Cities and Cedar Rapids to call him to protest the planned cuts, which the group says will impact funding for the five-year, $15 billion President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, according to CongressDaily (CongressDaily, 3/17). Bush's proposed FY 2005 budget includes $2.8 billion for international HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria programs, including $1.45 billion for the new State Department Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator and $200 million for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 3/4). Nussle's budget plan, which is nonbinding and can be changed by the House Appropriations Committee, would cut foreign aid in favor of increases for the funding of veterans' benefits and other programs (CongressDaily, 3/17). The House likely will pass the budget committee's plan next week, according to the Post (Washington Post, 3/18). The Senate on March 12 approved its FY 2005 budget resolution, which would increase Bush's foreign aid request by $300 million. The Senate during debate on the measure approved an amendment sponsored by Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) that would add $300 million to fight global AIDS (Cohn/Koffler, CongressDaily, 3/12).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.