Michael Douglas backs State Dep't in budget battle

WASHINGTON (AP) - November 3, 2011

Michael Douglas visited the State Department on Thursday to discuss nuclear disarmament efforts and speak out against congressional efforts to slash billions of dollars in foreign assistance.

The 67-year-old Oscar-winning actor told reporters, "People don't really take the time to understand just how important diplomacy is: It takes a long time. It's quiet. But it certainly is a lot cheaper than a war."

Douglas, who campaigns against atomic weapons for the U.N. and the anti-nuclear group Ploughshares, conceded disarmament efforts have bogged down since a U.S.-Russian nuclear arms reduction treaty took force in February. President Barack Obama also supports a global ban on nuclear testing, but that treaty lacks sufficient Senate support.

Douglas won an Oscar for Best Actor for his 1987 portrayal of tycoon Gordon Gekko in the film "Wall Street."

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