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Health advocates are criticizing a budget item that would reverse an Obama campaign pledge to combat the spread of HIV and AIDS by lifting the federal ban on needle exchange programs. The Obama budget includes language that bans any federal spending on needle exchange.
Originally posted by Sestias
If, in fact, he is not providing the necessary funds, that could well be an item on which he has had to compromise with conservatives. It was necessary to make many such concessions in order to pass the budget. The president has to work with many, many people when he wants to implement the programs he favors, and he rarely gets everything he wants. Presidents are not kings; they do not govern by royal decree.
White House spokesman Ben LaBolt said the administration isn't yet ready to lift the ban - but Obama still supports needle exchange.
"We have not removed the ban in our budget proposal because we want to work with Congress and the American public to build support for this change," he said. "We are committed to doing this as part of a National HIV/AIDS strategy and are confident that we can build support for these scientifically-based programs."