Bono visits Washington

Bono / U2TOURFANS

Bono will appeal to Democrats and Republicans
during a visit to Washington this week to spare U.S. development
assistance programs from cuts as Congress tries to avert the looming
“fiscal cliff” of tax hikes and spending reductions early next year.

he U2 lead singer’s visit comes as the Obama
administration and congressional leaders try to forge a deal in coming
weeks to avoid the economy hitting the “fiscal cliff” – tax increases and spending cuts worth $600 billion starting in January if Congress does not act.

Analysts say the absence of a deal could shock the United States, the world’s biggest economy, back into recession.

Kathy
McKiernan, spokeswoman for the ONE Campaign, said Bono will hold talks
with congressional lawmakers and senior Obama administration officials
during the November 12-14 visit.

During
meetings he will stress the effectiveness of U.S. foreign assistance
programs and the need to preserve them to avoid putting at risk progress
made in fighting HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, she said.

Bono,
a long-time advocate for the poor, will argue that U.S.
government-funded schemes that support life-saving treatments for
HIV/AIDS sufferers, nutrition programs for malnourished children, and
emergency food aid make up just 1 percent of the U.S. government budget
but are helping to save tens of millions of lives in impoverished
nations.

The One Campaign would not elaborate which lawmakers and senior Obama administration officials Bono will meet.