Affleck comes to town (Washington)
March 4th, 2011
02:32 PM ET
3 years ago

Affleck comes to town (Washington)

Washington (CNN) - Hollywood celebrity Ben Affleck is bringing his star power to Capitol Hill Tuesday, where he will testify about the "devastating humanitarian crisis in eastern Congo," according to a statement by the actor.

He will be appearing on behalf of the Eastern Congo Initiative, a non-profit organization that he founded in 2010. Affleck is expected to appear before the House Africa, Global Health and Human Rights Subcommittee at a panel held by Republican Congressman Chris Smith of New Jersey.

Affleck will speak alongside representatives from the State Department, USAID, and other human rights groups to "bring increased investment and attention from both the public and private sectors to the devastating humanitarian crisis in eastern Congo," he said in a statement.

Last fall the Oscar-winning-screenwriter hosted a bi-partisan panel discussion on U.S. foreign policy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo featuring Massachusetts Democratic Sen. John Kerry and GOP Sen. John Boozman of Arkansas.

He launched ECI in 2010 to provide support for Congolese community organizations working to rebuild the war-ravaged country. "The people of eastern Congo are remarkably resilient and Congressman Smith's leadership is helping the Congolese rise above their troubled past," he said.

Affleck isn't new to the political arena: he previously testified before Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Health and Human Services in July of 2001 to support funding for stem cell research at a hearing titled "The Promise of the Genomic Revolution," and in 2008 he met then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi after observing House floor proceedings as he researched his role in "State of Play," a political drama set in Washington, D.C.

CNN's Deirdre Walsh contributed to this report.


Filed under: Capitol Hill • House
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Rick McDaniel

    When are we going to learn.......we have more than enough problems to solve, right here in America. If there are problems that need solving in Eastern Congo, then let African nations help solve those problems, they are, after all, in the "neighborhood".

    March 4, 2011 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  2. Bob in PA

    LOL – Yeah Ben, you are the authority. WHy do politicians take actors so seriously ?

    March 4, 2011 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  3. Dennis

    I might pay attention to some actors, but Ben Affleck is not one of them.

    March 4, 2011 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  4. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    Whatever is going on in some obscure country in Africa is not the proper business of the US.

    March 4, 2011 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |