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Former Presidents Launch Campaign to Assist Hurricane Victims

WASHINGTON — The five living former presidents of the United States — Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama — have launched a new campaign to urge support for those affected by Hurricane Harvey. They also may expand the appeal to those who are hit by Hurricane Irma.

The campaign is launching with a public service announcement called “Our Friends in Texas” that will run during NBC’s NFL game broadcast on Thursday evening. The five presidents all appear in the 30-second spot. The effort is being called One America Appeal, and a website has been set up to take donations.

“Every storm is unique, but a look at Hurricane Harvey’s unprecedented intensity helps explain why the One America Appeal came to life,” reads a message on the site.

A special restricted account was established through the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library Foundation to collect donations, and to “ensure that 100 cents out of every dollar goes to assist hurricane victims,” according to the announcement. The money will be distributed to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, which focuses on the greater Houston region, and the Rebuild Texas Fund.

One America Appeal also is watching Hurricane Irma, which has already caused destruction in the Caribbean, to determine how the campaign can help those victims.

Clinton and George W. Bush teamed up in 2010 to form a nonprofit to assist the victims of the devastating earthquake in Haiti. Clinton and George H.W. Bush also teamed up to raise money for the relief efforts after the 2005 Asian tsunami and later Hurricane Katrina.

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