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The Genetics Society of America is requesting that its members contact their Senators to ask them to support an amendment to increase the 2007 NIH budget proposed by President Bush. As it current stands, the proposed 2007 budget is equal to the 2006 budget (without even a correction for inflation). If you would like contact your Senator, you can look up his or her address, phone number, email, and fax number here. I have reproduced the letter from the GSA below the fold.

From the Genetics Society of America:

Read below and contact your Senators using the CapWiz connection (see URL below) through the Joint Steering Committee for Public Policy as soon as possible!!

Tell Your Senators to Vote in Support of the Specter/Harkin Amendment

Background

President Bush’s Fiscal Year 2007 (FY07) budget proposal recommends that the National Institutes of Health be funded at $28.587 billion, the same funding level as the FY 06 budget. This budget represents four straight years of nominal increases or outright cuts in biomedical research. The gains associated with the five year doubling are rapidly being eroded.

If Congress approves the President’s proposed 2007 budget, lawmakers will effectively turn their backs on our national commitment to biomedical research and their investment into the NIH. Far from arbitrary figures, these funding cuts translate directly into the stifling of innovation and will limit opportunities for the next generation of researchers. In the long run, it also means fewer discoveries and few benefits of research for those who face diseases.

While all of us understand the need for budget constraint and the difficult choices facing our elected officials, we know we cannot abandon our commitment to medical research and the promise it holds.

Action

As a first step to increase the NIH budget, Senators Arlen Specter (R-PA) and Tom Harkin (D-IA) plan to offer an amendment on the Senate floor to increase funding by $7 billion for the sections of the budget that provide funding for the NIH.

Given the immediacy of the situation, call your Senators. You can easily identify your Senators, their address, fax, email and phone number though the JSC’s Online Advocacy Center http://capwiz.com/jscpp/home/

Your voice matters! Your voice is needed now! Senators, especially Republican Senators, need to hear from as many scientists as possible to encourage them to support the NIH and to support the Specter/Harkin Amendment to the Senate Budget Resolution.

Talking Points

- Ask them to support the NIH and the Specter/Harkin Amendment to the Senate Budget Resolution.

– Discuss how cuts at NIH have affected you.

– Discuss your research; explain its practical applications

– Convey accountability. Let the Senate know what is being done with NIH funding.

Comments

  1. #1 Orac
    March 15, 2006

    It’s worse than that. The NIH budget is flat, but certain Institutes have suffered absolute cuts. For example, as I pointed out, if the budget stands, FY 2007 will represent the second year in a row that the National Cancer Institute’s budget has been cut, for a combined cut of $72 million between FY 2005 and 2007.

    Yet somehow they find $120 million a year to fund the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine and can find funds for a $140 million increase in the budget for the Office of the Director.

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