UW Madison student wants her lawmakers to act on global poverty

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - A UW Madison student is pressing her lawmakers this week in Washington. As part of the ONE Campaign, Kelli Liegel is advocating for her leaders to take action to end global poverty. President Trump recently sent his 2019 budget proposal to Congress that calls for a 26-percent cut to State Department and other international programs.

Kellie Liegel says her lawmakers should show a commitment to helping those in need in other countries.

“I was raised with the idea of good will, that we should give back to others when we can,” said Liegel.

Liegel says she wants her lawmakers to push back against the president’s request.

“Any cut to that budget is just a threat to the fight against global poverty,” said Liegel.

The ONE Campaign is on the front lines of that fight. Liegel, a Badger ambassador for the advocacy group says they push leaders to act to end global poverty and preventable diseases.

“What we’re doing is working and I think it’s important to continue to improve upon that,” said Liegel.

The campaign has a focus on helping people in Sub-Saharan Africa. Some say U.S. aid missions are being stretched too thin.

“Part of the problem is that we’re trying to be everything to everyone everywhere,” said Jim Roberts, a former State Department official working at the conservative Heritage Foundation.

He says U.S. foreign aid needs reorganizing and more partnerships with the private sector.

“It’s not government that is going to, you know, grow economies and provide for people. It’s private sector-led trade and investment,” said Roberts.

Congress will address the president’s 2019 budget proposal after they finalize a 2018 budget. Some lawmakers say they expect that to happen later in March.

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