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Defunding the Dragon: Congressman Joseph Pitts Renews Call to Shift USAID Population Control Funds to Child Survival Programs

Speaking at a PRI-sponsored Congressional Briefing March 9 on Capitol Hill, Congressman Joseph Pitts (R-16-PA) renewed his call to shift 100 million foreign operations dollars from USAID population control projects to child survival programs instead.

Congressman Pitts said that “When we address Foreign Operations Appropriations, we will attempt to prioritize a program which we know works, Child Survival.” Pitts added that he will “seek to transfer $100 million from population control to child survival.”

Pitts shared a story of a Kenyan doctor who testified that the Kenyan health sector has collapsed. The doctor said that “thousands of Kenyan people will die of malaria, whose treatment costs a few cents in health facilities whose stores are stacked to the roof with millions of dollars worth of pills, IUDs, Norplant, and Depo-provera, most of which are supplied with American money.”

Congressman Pitts concluded that “‘[t]he same children who play in the streets with condom balloons and built small temples with free boxes of contraceptives are the same children who continue to die from easily preventable diseases. Not only is this a ridiculous use of American tax dollars, but this is life threatening. And it must change.”

The Congressional Briefing, on the topic of “The Economic and Social Consequences of Depopulation” also featured Dr. Nicholas Eberstadt, of the American Enterprise Institute and Harvard’s Center for Population and Development Studies, who spoke on the topic of Asia’s looming demographic crisis; Mindy Belz, of World Magazine, who spoke on her investigative research of illegal population control efforts in Kenya; and W. Patrick Cunningham, of Massachusetts Mutual, who spoke on the effect of declining fertility rates on the solvency of the Social Security system.

The briefing was attended by members of the U.S. Congress and staff and drew local, national and international media.

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