Bono Crashes '08 Campaign

With his low public approval ratings, Bush and other leaders rely on the public relations boost a meeting with Bono can provide.

"Hanging out with good company, aren't I?" Bush said as he walked inside the Kempinski Grand Hotel Heiligendamm.

Thanks in part to pressure from Bono, in 2003 Bush pledged about $15-million in AIDS relief for Africa.

African Activists Plead for Continued Funding

In Washington today, an African woman said that money came too late to save her brothers.

"I lost my brothers to AIDS," said Karen Sichinga, a nurse who works for a church-based health group in Zambia, wiping tears from her eyes.

However, Sichinga said the U.S. aid money, known as the President's Emergency Fund, has become a lifeline for a continent struggling with disease and poverty.

"My message is to say 'Thank you, America'," she said. "And to the next president, whoever it may be, please continue what has been started through the President's Emergency Fund."

Poverty Campaign Goes High-Tech

ONE Campaign president and CEO Susan McCue said the new political campaign would rely heavily on the Internet to connect with ONE's supporters. They estimate 2.4 million Americans signed a declaration against global poverty and disease on the Web site.

Supporters will be contacted through e-mail and through the campaign's 100,000-plus MySpace "friends" and the organization's Facebook page.

The campaign is heavily targeting supporters and the media in the early primary voting states -- including Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire and South Carolina. Each of these states will roll out its own mobilization efforts and campaign launch.

The campaign will urge candidates to sport a white plastic ONE band around their wrists.

ONE Vote '08 is even getting some star-power from Hollywood.

On Monday night, actor Ben Affleck will be on a ONE conference call to promote the new political campaign.

Hollywood actors including Affeck, Matt Damon and Ashley Judd have signed on to promote the campaign.

Bono Flexes Political Power

Bono, born and raised in Dublin, Ireland, has already flexed his power to influence the '08 campaign.

In July's Vanity Fair magazine, for which Bono served as guest editor, both Democratic and Republican candidates submitted their answer to the question: "As President, what would you do to fight AIDS and extreme poverty around the globe, particularly in Africa?"

Thirteen contenders answered the question.

"I would start by providing funds to put all of Africa's children in school," said Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y. "With universal education, Africans will soon work themselves out of poverty."

"I will work with drug companies to share AIDS drugs across Africa and double our investment in clean water to avoid preventable diseases," said former former North Carolina Democratic Sen. John Edwards, who has centered his second presidential bid on an anti-poverty crusade.

Vanity Fair Details '08 Candidates' Africa Promises

"As president, by 2012 I will double to $50 billion annually our foreign investments, much of which will go to sustainable development and poverty reduction," said political newcomer Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.

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