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Public Statements

Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2004-Continued

Location: Washington, DC



Mr. SANTORUM. Mr. President, earlier today, I offered an amendment to increase the amount of money in the Aid for Africa Program to the number that met the authorization level this Senate passed just a couple months ago. It was an additional $350 million which would be needed to do the $2 billion in bilateral aid to which we committed, plus the $400 million we would need to match roughly $700 million-plus that has now been put forward by other countries for the Global Fund.

This bill is, in combination with the foreign operations bill, $350 million short for what I believe is the most important health crisis facing the world and one I would argue is, as far as dollars spent, going to save more lives and improve the quality of life for more people than probably any other single dollar item we are doing in this bill.

I believe this is the highest priority. That is why I was willing to offer an amendment to fund this program fully and to do so with an across-the-board cut. Having seen the success of an across-the-board cut in a previous amendment, I have not been necessarily encouraged by my colleagues to continue this effort.

I thank the Senator from Pennsylvania, my colleague, in sharpening his pencil to come up with enough money to at least meet the President's request on his program, which is an additional $61 million. It is an amendment Senator DeWine offered earlier for mother-to-child transmission and for nonmother-to-child transmission.

Senator DeWine has been doing some great work, along, I understand now, with Senator Durbin, to come up with this money.

In exchange for the acceptance of that amendment by the managers, I am going to withhold my amendment. I yield to the Senator from Ohio to explain what his amendment does.

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