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U.S. Congress Should Continue To Support, Fully Fund PEPFAR To Reach AIDS-Free Generation Goal

Minneapolis Star Tribune: Keep fighting AIDS ‘until the job is done’
Editorial Board

“…PEPFAR is now in the budget cross hairs of the young Trump administration. The president’s so-called ‘skinny budget’ proposal for [FY 2018]¬†recommends dramatic cuts to medical research, health and human services programs, and the State Department, among other areas. While many observers initially thought the administration had spared PEPFAR, closer scrutiny of its ‘reduction options’ reveals a recommended cut of [around $300] million. The PEPFAR reductions have not been enacted because Congress has yet to pass a 2017 budget. But PEPFAR’s inclusion in the administration’s ‘reduction options’ suggests a potential retreat from the nation’s role in leading the global fight against AIDS. That’s deeply troubling. … Former President [George W.] Bush … recently wrote a commentary for the Washington Post urging Congress to fully fund the program. … Bush’s defense of this remarkable humanitarian program is welcome. He’s exactly right in saying that: ‘We are on the verge of an AIDS-free generation, but the people of Africa still need our help.’ Americans should take the former president’s advice and ‘keep going until the job is done'” (4/13).