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April 30, 2003
Bill to Fund AIDS Prevention Efforts Needs Work 
H.R. 1298, the United States Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Act of 2003, will be considered on Thursday, May 1, 2003. The bill purports to spend $15 billion primarily to fight the spread of AIDS in Africa. As it stands the bill would allow this huge amount of money to be funneled through international "family planning" agencies that would use it to continue their failed programs of condom distribution as the death toll grows.

Concerned Women for America’s Vice President for Government Relations, Michael Schwartz, in a release issued on April 28, 2003, outlined the need for amendments to the bill so that it will become "more effective and fiscally responsible," said:

"Pro-family members of Congress plan to offer amendments to H.R. 1298 on the House floor on Thursday to strengthen the bill to 1) ensure that the U.S. funds HIV/AIDS prevention methods that have proven to be effective in actually reducing the incidence and spread of HIV/AIDS in countries such as Uganda." where abstinence has been the most successful tool in reducing the incidence of HIV infection; 2) provide a conscience clause for faith-based organizations engaged in HIV/AIDS prevention so that they would not have to distribute condoms if it is against their religious or moral beliefs; and 3) Limit the amount of money given to the Global Fund, an organization that is not accountable to anyone, according to Mr. Schwartz.

Steve Mosher, president of the Population Research Institute, had this to say about the African AIDS pandemic: "The need for effective AIDS relief in Africa, as called for by President Bush, is tragically self-evident. But before we throw $15 billion at the problem, we must understand that past programs have failed.

"Even more importantly, we must understand why past HIV/AIDS programs in Africa have failed. It is not because they lacked resources, but because they were based on a false - and deadly - premise of reckless promiscuity among Africans. Many AIDS experts have long maintained that heterosexual activity accounts for 90% or more of HIV infections in African adults. This is why family planning programs have been ratcheted up to include HIV prevention. But a series of studies published in the March 2003 issue of a respected peer-reviewed journal, the International Journal of STD & AIDS, suggests that the chief culprit may be medical transmission. Infected needles and infected blood, in other words. This mistake, driven by a fixation on reducing African populations and failed programs that actually spread HIV/AIDS, has cost millions of lives."

Instead of pouring billions into more failed programs directed by population controllers and abortion promoters, we should be helping Africans to clean up their medical procedures and equipment, to ensure that they have, to the greatest extent possible, an HIV-free blood supply, and institute universal testing of expectant mothers so those who are infected will not spread it to their newborn babies through nursing. As for sexual transmission of the virus, widespread abstinence education programs should be implemented which have been shown to dramatically reduce the incidence of HIV/AIDS in Uganda.

The United States Congress has a responsibility to the taxpayers to spend our money on projects that we know will really help free the African people from the horrors of AIDS instead of wasting it on more of what doesn’t work.

Please call your Member of Congress now to urge support for pro-health amendments to H.R. 1298. Capitol Switchboard — 202/224-3121.

Republican National
Coalition for Life

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