Opinion

Kudos to EPA For Targeting Taxpayer-funded Fake Science

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Posted: Jul 12, 2019 11:47 AM
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Kudos to EPA For Targeting Taxpayer-funded Fake Science

Source: AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

If you want to drain the swamp at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),  you’re in for some good news.

According to new reports, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler is preparing to unveil a bold new plan to reduce expensive, misleading and cruel animal testing at the agency, an EPA priority he highlighted during his Senate confirmation testimony earlier this year, and something he’s been concerned with throughout his career

Under previous administrations, EPA animal testing thrived. As White Coat Waste Project (WCW) exposed last year, government bureaucrats have been subjecting more than 20,000 bunnies, mice and other animals each year to contrived and irrelevant tests that included making them eat lard to induce obesity and then forcing them to inhale truck exhaust, smog, and ozone for hours and days on end to allegedly assess the effects of air pollution. In other tests, animals were blasted with loud noises and exposed to ozone, pregnant animals were stressed with light and noise and their babies were given electric shocks.

Speaking on the House floor last year, leading EPA critic Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL) slammed these animal tests, remarking, “Mr. Speaker, we find a lot of ways to waste money in this town, but the EPA may have just reached a new low.”

Now, Administrator Wheeler is continuing the Trump Administration’s work to right the EPA ship by targeting a nonsensical program that harms Americans, animals and the economy with taxpayer-funded fake science.  The EPA’s own scientists even recently admitted, “animals used in these studies have fundamental anatomical, physiological, and biochemical differences compared with their human counterparts.” 

It may surprise some that cutting the EPA’s animal testing program is a reform with wide bipartisan support. A national poll last year found that 79% of Republican voters and 68% of Democrat voters want to reduce federal spending on EPA animal tests. Even Pulitzer-winning, leftist journalist Glenn Greenwald retweeted a Daily Caller article panning EPA's animal tests, writing, "Disgust and opposition to horrific government experiments on animals are not only growing rapidly but is becoming bipartisan and trans-ideological." 

Here’s the proof: Earlier this year, following a grassroots campaign by our taxpayer watchdog group, Republican and Democrat strange-bedfellows like Rep. Gaetz, Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA), and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-FL) worked together to enact legislation signed by President Trump urging the EPA to cut its animal testing.  Now, EPA is heeding the wishes of POTUS, Congress, and taxpayers across the country.

Specifics of the forthcoming EPA plan have not been confirmed, but reports indicate that a robust phase-out plan for animal testing conducted by and required by the agency is in the works.  As far as we’re aware, this is the first time a federal agency has floated a plan to transition away from all wasteful animal tests, and it's particularly powerful coming from the largest environmental agency in the world.

Administrator Wheeler and the EPA should be applauded for their plans to cut wasteful government spending that’s bad for animals, taxpayers, industry and the environment.

Whether you’re a liberty-lover, animal-lover, or both -- the EPA’s latest move is a win-win.

Anthony Bellotti is the founder and president of taxpayer watchdog group White Coat Waste Project. Bellotti previously worked as a strategist on Republican candidate and issue campaigns and was executive director of the American Association of Political Consultants.