Actor-writer-director-advocate Ben Affleck appeared before a packed subcommittee meeting Tuesday, but he kept the Hollywood glam to a minimum.
Affleck, who introduced himself as the founder of the Eastern Congo Initiative, arrived with Cindy McCain at the hearing on the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The twosome — McCain later called herself and Affleck “strange political bedfellows” and “the political odd couple” — recently returned from a trip to the region.
Affleck, looking very much the politician, spoke about the problems facing the DRC.
“Five million people have died since 1998,” Affleck said. “We must learn from history and never let this happen again.”
Affleck shared that he had prepped for several years before testifying. “I didn’t want to be a celebrity dilettante that irritates everyone,” he said.
Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., walks on Broadway after a Future Forum with young entrepreneurs in the Flatiron District of New York City, April 16, 2015. Reps. Steve Israel, D-N.Y., Seth Moulton, D-Mass., and Grace Meng, D-N.Y., also attended.