Gates advocates for foreign aid during Capitol Hill meetings

Gates advocates for foreign aid during Capitol Hill meetings
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Bill Gates met with several Congressional leaders on Tuesday to discuss foreign aid and global health issues.

Gates's representatives did not specify which lawmakers Gates was meeting with, but reporters from The Hill saw Microsoft's founder entering the offices of Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSenate Democrats unveil priorities for federal privacy bill Overnight Health Care: Trump officials making changes to drug pricing proposal | House panel advances flavored e-cig ban | Senators press FDA tobacco chief on vaping ban Chad Wolf becomes acting DHS secretary MORE (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), the chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus.

In his Capitol Hill meetings, Gates stressed the potential impact that budget cuts could have on programs backed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, according to a Gates Foundation spokesperson. These programs include efforts to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis, to contain malaria and to deliver vaccines.

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“Cuts to these high-value, high-impact programs could put millions of lives at risk,” said a Gates Foundation spokesperson. Gates also "raised the importance of expanding access to economic opportunity and education here at home," the spokesperson said.

President Trump did not propose any spending cuts to specific programs cited by the Gates Foundation spokesperson in his budget blueprint last week. Comments from Congressional leaders so far don't suggest that these programs are threatened.

Still, proposed cuts to foreign aid, which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellFeehery: Pivoting to infrastructure could help heal post-impeachment wounds McConnell urges Trump to voice support for Hong Kong protesters Key GOP senator: 'We need a breakthrough' on spending talks MORE (R-Ky.) has criticized, have made a number of groups that work overseas nervous.

The Hill meetings come a day after Gates met with President Trump.