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South Carolina ONE Members Help Shape Presidential Primary

January 22, 2008

South Carolina ONE Members Help Shape Presidential Primary

After months crisscrossing state, volunteers help gain historic commitments from candidates, including McCain

Columbia, S.C.ONE members capped months of advocacy and grassroots campaigning with a major presence in Saturday’s South Carolina Republican presidential primary. ONE members were spread across the Palmetto State at events and polling places, engaging voters and urging all candidates, including the GOP primary winner Senator John McCain, to honor his commitments to tackle extreme poverty and preventable disease around the world and to expand upon them. Saturday’s efforts continued an almost year-long campaign by South Carolina ONE members, who now turn their attention to the Democratic primary.

 

ONE President and CEO David Lane commented on the grassroots energy of ONE members in the Palmetto State, which motivated both Republican and Democratic presidential candidates to craft historic plans to help the world’s poor:

 

“Since the earliest days of the presidential campaign in South Carolina, ONE members have been everywhere the candidates have been. We have challenged the candidates like never before on these vital issues, and in return, candidates have offered unprecedented commitments to fight extreme poverty and preventable disease globally. Whoever the next president is, he or she will know that millions of Americans want their country to take the lead in saving the millions of lives threatened every day by brutal poverty and preventable diseases. And when that president is sworn into office, ONE members will be on hand to make sure the promises made to save those lives, the very promises volunteers in South Carolina helped to earn, are kept. Together, America can renew its legacy of compassion and global leadership.”

 

The winning candidate in Saturday’s Republican presidential primary, Senator McCain, has made several commitments to combat global poverty and disease. He took part in ONE Vote’s “On the Record Challenge,” producing a video response and providing written answers to questions on their plans to address HIV/AIDS, malaria, maternal and child health, clean water and education in the world’s poorest countries. Senator McCain’s commitments can be found at onevote08.org/ontherecord.

 

As part of the On the Record Challenge, Senator McCain said he would establish the goal of eradicating malaria—the number one killer of children under five in Africa—from the continent. He also reiterated his support for the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). McCain also pledged to increase access to clean water in poor nations, as well as take steps to ensure all nations have fair and increased access to international markets through trade. While campaigning across New Hampshire, Senator McCain repeatedly acknowledged ONE as an organization he respects and, at town hall events, often passed his microphone to ONE members in the audience, giving them the stage to address voters.

 

Throughout the presidential primary campaign, South Carolina ONE volunteers, of whom there are more than 20,000 statewide, proved to be tireless advocates for the world’s poorest people. ONE members could be found at nearly all campaign stops, in coffee shops, at rallies and at debates, insisting the candidates speak on these vital issues. For instance, Seaton Brown, a junior at the College of Charleston, has worked to engage candidates as a student leader and activist for ONE.

 

“Imagine living on less than a dollar a day. That sounds impossible, but it is a reality for millions of people. Imagine a child dying every three seconds from entirely preventable diseases like malaria or TB or diarrhea. It shouldn’t be happening in the 21st century. When we open our eyes to the problems around us, we can make a difference. America can help save lives and, when we do, we can make our own future more secure,” Seaton said.

 

ONE, through its ONE Vote ’08 initiative, is not endorsing or opposing any candidate, but is encouraging all presidential candidates to address these critical issues. To see the commitments each candidate made, visit onevote08.org/ontherecord.  

 

On The Record is a project of ONE Action to educate voters about the presidential candidates’ plans on issues of importance to ONE Action’s members. Only 501(c)(3) activities are funded by The ONE Campaign.

 

ONE is a grassroots effort of more than 2.4 million Americans, rallying Americans and pressing our leaders to fight the emergency of extreme poverty and preventable global disease. For more information, visit ONE.org <http://www.one.org/>

 

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One Comment leave one →
  1. January 27, 2008 7:25 pm

    In addition to the great work of the ONE campaign, you can learn more about where the candidates stand on global poverty and other foreign policy issues at http://blog.globaldevelopmentmatters.org

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