AIDS groups and activists tell Advocate.com they are disappointed the candidates avoided talking about domestic AIDS issues, particularly the Bush administration's flat-funding of Ryan White spending, the financial crisis faced by the nation's AIDS Drug Assistance Programs, and President Bush's push for abstinence-only sex and HIV prevention education programs.
AIDSVote.org says "Democrats and Republicans still need AIDS 101 education":
AIDSVote.org urges the audience participants and moderators of the two final presidential debates to demand specific and detailed answers from the candidates about their HIV/AIDS policies. The group's model presidential platform contains a detailed plan on effective strategies to combat HIV/AIDSin the U.S. and abroad. Hundreds of organizations and thousands of individuals have endorsed this platform, generating emails to the candidates encouraging them to do more in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
Note: Texas AIDS Network has endorsed the AIDSVote platform.
The CAEAR Coalition issued a call for national action in response the failure of the candidates to answer Gwen Ifill's question adequately:
It is time for a wake-up call to all of our leaders. It is time to increase funds for the Ryan White CARE Act with an additional $425 million. Congress has the appropriations legislation before it now, it should act now, and the administration should call for this action immediately.
At the same time, we will redouble our efforts to educate the nations leaders and decision makers about the appalling statistics regarding the prevalence of HIV/AIDS among African American women and other severely impacted communities, and the need to support the CARE Act, which is the foundation of the nation's ability to meet the needs of these communities.
Developing, as they say.