Damon: I'd kiss Bush
April 19th, 2012
03:21 PM ET
2 years ago

Damon: I'd kiss Bush

(CNN) - Matt Damon put a time cap and stipulation on how he would kiss former President George W. Bush: "Three seconds, no tongue" … All in the name of AIDS Relief.

"I would kiss George W. Bush on the mouth for what he did on PEPFAR," Damon told The Atlantic.

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Damon, who has been an active humanitarian activist specializing on African issues, praised Bush's involvement in PEPFAR, the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief that has brought anti-retroviral drugs to AIDS patients in Africa. But the actor and high profile 2008 Obama supporter said he has been "disappointed" by the current administration, pointing to what he saw as an incomplete devotion to poverty and disease prevention in Africa.

"You would have expected that Obama, with his reputation as a pragmatist, would look at PEPFAR, looked at how effective it is, and thought that he should make similar investments in other issues, definitely water and sanitation," the 2008 Obama backer said. "I take issue with a few of the directions Obama has gone in."

PEPFAR was started in 2003 as a $15 billion five year commitment from Bush to fight the global HIV/AIDS pandemic. The program was renewed and expanded in 2008. Shortly after the reauthorization, the Obama administration announced a new approach to the U.S. government's delivery of health assistance, intended to address criticisms of the program, including a lack of coordination between partner countries.

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Filed under: George W. Bush
soundoff (138 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    Damon's words are not well thought out. To his credit, he appears to consumed by the aid organization. Too bad that he's displaying ignorance of DC politics and the toxic atmosphere in Congress when it comes to spending cuts, especially discretionary spending cuts. I don't say this often about people, but Damon is an idiot.

    April 19, 2012 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  2. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Sorry Matt, Dubya is saving all his kisses for Saudi royalty.

    April 19, 2012 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  3. obie nwoye

    Damon is 100% on point on this issue....Obama has not done anything of consequence with regards to Africa. I know he took office with a litany of economic and political problems, but at this point I don't believe Africa is anywhere on his agenda, and that is so sad

    April 19, 2012 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    As much as I agree with the goal...getting relief to Africa, etc....Damon can shove the self-rigtheous criticism back down his pie hole. Give the GOP/Teatroll response to providing health care TO OUR OWN FELLOW CITIZENS, I have two questions for his pretty boy ass:

    1. How did he expect GOPers/Teatrolls to react to Obama pushing spending on Africa issues as a higher priority...you know, while they were busy accusing him of being born in Kenya and being a secret muslim, etc. etc.?

    2. How did he expect Obama to succeed, both procedurally and politically, in pushing such an agenda while the GOP/Teatrolls in Congress were in full-on hissy fit obstructionist radicalized right-wing-nutjob mode and had taken over the House, from whence all appropriations must originate, in 2010?

    Answer those questions, Damon, you misguided scrub, or your criticism is illegitimate and petty. It's getting a little tiring listening to fellow liberals lose site of the realities of what we want to be accomplished versus what was POSSIBLE to accomplish.

    April 19, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  5. Pander Bear

    Matt, I appreciate that you are trying to put your celebrity to good use "an incomplete devotion to poverty and disease prevention in Africa" really the biggest issue facing the President right now? The program was renewed and expanded under Obama and what? He didn't renew it fast enough or expand it far enough? This is weak.

    April 19, 2012 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  6. carlos

    not worthy of any type of kiss

    April 19, 2012 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  7. TonyK

    Damon's no idiot. He is fully aware of our toxic congress and such. The fact is we need to take stands on issues no matter how toxic congress is, or how naive people might think we are. It is when citizens take stands and continue to take stands in enlightened and respectful ways, with openness of mind and heart that change, however slowly, begins to take root. Contrary to both left and right, change does not happen through anger, sarcasm or arrogance. Meaningful and lasting change happens when people live by their considered convictions, no matter what congress does or how toxic it is.

    April 19, 2012 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  8. The Real Truth and Nothing But the Real Truth

    Rudy NYC - Damon's words are not well thought out. To his credit, he appears to consumed by the aid organization. Too bad that he's displaying ignorance of DC politics and the toxic atmosphere in Congress when it comes to spending cuts, especially discretionary spending cuts. I don't say this often about people, but Damon is an idiot.
    ==============================================================================================
    Rudy, Rudy, Rudy.... how very partisan of you. There has not been one person on the planet, until YOU, that has not admitted George Bush played a pivotal role. It is not Damon that is the idiot here.

    April 19, 2012 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  9. Pete

    Matt,you should have thought it thru before opening your mouth.Pres.Obama does care but with the Syrian revolt,N.Korean problems,to many to say,and other domestic problems.He definitly has his hands full ,give him time,he truelly wants to help,but more important problems await.So kiss Bush all ya want,he's your problem,only yours....

    April 19, 2012 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  10. Georgia Girl

    Matt Damon is an idiot and his movies suck.

    April 19, 2012 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  11. NVa Native

    WOW – At least Bush might have had at least one non-failure during his eight years of steering the US deep into the "ditch" ~ that would be nice.

    April 19, 2012 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  12. Myviewis

    Obama is a great, great salesman. He's charasmatic, captivating, he knows how to attract people, great motivational speaker, he inspires an audience, the problem is once he's got ya he doesn't come through, he has no commitment and creates an excuse as to why he didn't come through. We all know people like this in our lives, you know the ones that never show up after convincing everyone to get involved in a project yet they make themselves sound so involved, so committed.

    April 19, 2012 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  13. Myviewis

    @Rudy NYC – it takes one to recognize one. I think Matt has seen reality of how motivational salesman like Obama work, you will get there someday.

    April 19, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  14. Chris

    I'd kiss them both for a giraffe and a stout beer.

    April 19, 2012 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  15. Debby

    Damon is as dumb as his movies!

    April 19, 2012 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  16. dan

    Matt, unfortunately for you, W. wouldn't touch you with a 10 ft. pole. He posses something you lack.It's called class.

    April 19, 2012 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  17. Larry L

    The 4,500-plus Servicemembers killed in the war to impress "Daddy" are still dead.

    April 19, 2012 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  18. Tasmanian Devil

    Matt WHO?

    April 19, 2012 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  19. Alan J

    Damon with all due respect if President Obama did EVERYTHING EVERYBODY wanted him to do he would be a magician instead of POTUS! Bush had time on his hands since all he did for 8 years was Lie, Steal, Cheat Start illegal Wars and get richer he and his Wall Street buddies! This President has met a total Stonewall since January 20, 2009 and you know it from this pathetic Congress and Senate! Can we say what Pres. Obama HAS Done for a change? I guess not! Finally I ain't kissin Bush and no other man for any reason, period!

    April 19, 2012 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  20. Myviewis

    Bush is a serious man of his word, Obama is a fantastic motivational speaker that tells you what you want to hear, Obama makes you feel good.

    April 19, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  21. Myviewis

    Bush just proved that actions speak louder than words, Bush is action, Obama is just empty pretty words that make us all feel so good until we realize no action took place.

    April 19, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  22. xerock

    It's hard to believe that anyone anywhere gives a hoot what this second rate actor thinks about anything.

    April 19, 2012 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  23. Russ

    Well Damon is gay, what do you expect. As far as Bush, lots of people have done far more than he has on this issue.

    April 19, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  24. Rudy NYC

    Matt Damon is out of touch with political and economic realities. Pres. Obama is dealing with a House that has literally taken the milk out of the mouth's of babes. He's words were not well thought out, and he still sounds like an idiot.

    April 19, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  25. Alexanders

    Obama has done not one thing about helping people dealing with HIV problem. He needs to go.I'm so sick of his administration. I voted for him thinking he would be better than previous presidents. I was so wrong. I hate all his do's anymore.

    April 19, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
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