The Obama administration has chosen Dr. Robert Califf as the next commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), but at least one Senator stands in the way of the candidate’s approval by the Senate. Why? Because the ‘FDA approved the recent genetically engineered salmon days after Califf was questioned on the topic.’
Dr. Califf’s appointment has been a contentious one, especially when you consider that in 2014 alone, he collected more than $100,000 in fees from Big Pharma. He’s had financial ties to Merck, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, and Novartis, just to name a few, and he’s even helped to launch at least two other pharmaceutical companies. Califf also had a job at Duke University working with drug companies and the FDA to speed new meds through the approvals process.
Dr. Califf’s appointment was approved by by the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee last Tuesday, but Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska is threatening to block Califf’s candidacy over the FDA’s approval of genetically engineered salmon.
The FDA approved the GM fish even though more than 2 million people commented during the ‘open comment’ period on its website. They also will not require AquaBounty, the company responsible for bringing GM fish to market, to label it as such, so consumers wouldn’t even know when they are eating it. Like many Americans, Murkowski is appalled that the GM fish was ever approved by the FDA.
“She said she would put a hold on Dr. Califf’s candidacy because the FDA approved a genetically engineered salmon for consumption days after she questioned him on the topic at his confirmation hearing in November.”
Califf is currently the deputy commissioner of the FDA.
“If they are trying to get my support, they sure fumbled that ball,” said the Senator.
Murkowski comes from Alaska, a state that relies heavily on the salmon trade, and where fishermen are adamantly opposed to GMO salmon.
The senator spoke on the Senate floor in November against GM fish:
“I will not stand back and just watch these genetically engineered creatures be placed in our kitchens and on our tables without a fight,” she said in a statement following the after FDA’s approval of GMO salmon. “I am furious about this decision, but now I must do everything I can to make sure it is labeled—consumers have a right to know what it is they are eating.”
Besides threatening to block Califf’s appointment by Obama, Murkowski “helped insert language last month in a massive federal spending bill, directing FDA to prevent the AquaBounty product from reaching the U.S. market until regulators finalize labeling guidelines. It also tells the agency to spend ‘not less than $150,000’ on that effort,” The Washington Post reported.
She has also made it clear that voluntary labeling will not do. She said she would be pushing for further conversations with Califf to address this point.
Murkowski was so enraged, she even tweeted: “I look forward to having conversations w/FDA on Frankenfish, but I intend to block Califf’s confirmation until these issues are resolved.”
5 thoughts on “Outraged Senator to Block FDA Commissioner Over Questionable GM Salmon”
Good for Lisa. I hope some of her weak-kneed colleagues have the courage to join her.
Hope big, but GOVT., PHARMA CORPS, MONEY IS BIGGER, AND THEY WIN. THE ONLY THING “WE THE PEOPLE” can do, is Do our
best NOT BUY ANY GMO FOODS, READ INGREDIANTS
ON LABELS, STOP PROCESSED FOODS, BUY ORGANIC WHEN
POSSIBLE. WE CAN TRY COOK FROM SCRATCH AT HOME BEST WE CAN, (NOT always easy, timely). IF WE CUT SALES DOWN ON THESE MFGS., THEY WILL START TO SEE OUR MONEY, OUR HEALTH, IS WHAT MATTERS!! INCLUDES NOT Eating gmo foods
that have Any Corn, canola oil, fructose corn syrup, SOY BEANS,SOY OILS, SOY MILK, SOY INGREDIANTS, SUGAR BEETS, EVEN 95% all cotton globally , & US, is drenched in toxic Pesticides!! Can just do our Best to avoid buying, eating those items we know are slowly killing us and our babies , where 1 in every 50 now born with forms of Autism!!!! Chemicals,.metals, that are toxic to humans & animals.
Lisa is one of the original weak-knees. I am surprised frankly that she is doing this. Hope she wins.
Yes, you are correct. She is the child of a powerful family, nothing more. It is good to see her stand up and attempt to fight the good fight, but I am not holding my breath. most of the time she is not a person of passion, conviction or vision.
I SUPPORT LISA 100% & ACTUALLY want NO GM SEAFOOD, NOT JUST MANDATORY LABELING!
IN ADDITION, We should have NO GMO foods, No animal feed containing GMO FOODS, NO CORN, NO SOY, not in food, not in any animals, pets. And now Congress DOES NOT REQUIRE ANY FOODS TO BE LABELED CONTAIN GMO.AT ALL!!! A MFG. CAN
Voluntararily Label gmo if they want to. FDA, USDA, POLITICIANS,
are All paid off with Big Money to support DANGEROUS CHEMICALS, TOXINS, PESTICIDES, HERBICIDES, SPRAYINg our
Air, OUR LAND, SOIL,WATER, ALL FOODS WE EAT, C ENTER
on GMO seeds, Crops, thus all animals, pets , even affecting those “Organic Farmers Crops”, because.overspray blows in air over much of ORGANIC CROPS! MIX this in with the NUCLEAR
RADIATION ON OUR FOODS, SOIL,, WATERS & WE have a Sick, Diseased, country, slowly dying of Cancers etc. OUR GOVT. SUPPORTS ALL OF THIS , & BLAMES ANYTHING ON CLIMATE CHANGE, INSTEAD OF WHAT REALLY MAKING AMERICANS
HEALTH CARE ONE WORSE IN ANY DEVELOPING COUNTRY!
BIG PHARMA can Spend all they want to make more drugs, more vaccines, more research, and none of it is in Support of getting rid of GMO FOODS, SEEDS, BAD CHEMICAL INGREDIENTS IN FOODS,
THAT CAUSE OUR DISEASE!! IT IS THE WORSE LIE OF OUR WHOLE GENERATION AND FOR THE NEXT ONES.Sorry for big CAPS , AS HAVE A VISION PROBLEM TO SEE WHAT I TYPE.