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Latest News

Most of the world, and much of the United States, celebrated the November 4 victory of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States. While many continue to discuss and deliberate the outcome, President-elect Obama is already hard at work. This week, he began announcing his transition team and meeting with his top economic advisors, and held his first press conference. Our next president will face a host of global challenges, including two wars, energy and food crises, climate change, and health emergencies. All of them will have to be addressed in the context of the unfolding financial crisis and the resulting economic slowdown, which will place even more pressure on funding resources.

In these circumstances, the new administration must combine innovative and cost-effective solutions with a continued dedication to keeping its own and its partners' promises to the world's poor. This in turn will require international development cooperation, and here the Millennium Development Goals - increasingly embraced by the private sector as well as civil society across the globe - provide an unmatched framework for ending extreme poverty. Although the current Administration doubled U.S. aid and created several programs to encourage economic growth and fight HIV/AIDs, much of this support occurred without global engagement. Recognizing it makes financial and political sense to collaborate because no country can go afford to go it alone in today’s globalized world, President-elect Obama has committed to making the MDGs America’s goals.

Some of the particulars of his policy to achieve the MDGs include:
• Doubling annual foreign assistance from $25 billion to $50 billion.
• Signing the Education for All Act and requesting the funding needed to fulfill our share of the $10 billion needed annually to put 100 million children in school.
• Lifting the 33% cap on US contributions to the Global Fund, ensuring that at least 4.5 million people are on ARV treatment by 2013, and preventing 12 million new infections.
• Building on the $1 billion per year commitment to malaria in the recent PEPFAR reauthorization, dramatically expanding access to mosquito nets, and expanding access to treat people who get malaria.
• Halving the number of people living on less than a dollar a day and suffering from hunger by 2012.
You can read all of Obama’s plans and watch the videos here:
http://www.onevote08.org/ontherecord/obamaupdated.html?id=672-3600958-N0...

However, during the campaign both he and Vice-President-elect Joe Biden indicated that they may not be able to increase Overseas Development Assistance as quickly as scheduled due to the financial crisis. The emergency is expected to have ramifications for private giving as well. As we are well aware, this current economic slowdown will negatively impact the world’s poor, who are the least responsible for the crisis. It’s our hope that the new Administration and civil society can join together to ensure that there is no backsliding from these commitments and we look forward to working with the new Administration.


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