Paying to Play
September 24, 2009
An article in the New York Times brings light to what everyone knows but few discuss in Washington: those who have the money make the rules.
Four congressmen, two senators and two representatives, from New Jersey and a former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioner have been accused of putting undue pressure on the FDA to approve a medical device after receiving contributions from the device maker's executives.
The device maker's (ReGen Biologics Inc.) executives claim that they merely contacted their elected officials just as any other citizen might, except where your ordinary non-paying citizen might get a mass-produced stamped-signature letter, ReGen Biologics Inc. received in-person support directly from the congressmen to include pressuring a federal agency whose major responsibility is protecting consumers from faulty or dangerous items (the ReGen Biologics Inc. item in question was shown not to be any more effective than typical surgery, and even sometimes failing, requiring additional operations).
This does little to allay the impression of many that Washington is just a town of crooked politicians who are more interested in prolonging their careers than caring about the people they are supposed to be serving. More so, it is ugly proof that our elected officials are ready and willing to prostitute themselves and defile a system meant to protect Americans to anyone willing to pay.
The four congressmen are: Senators Robert Menendez and Frank Lautenberg and Representatives Frank Pallone Jr. and Steven Rothman.
We encourage all of our readers to contact their offices if they, too, are outraged at this behavior and think Congress should be doing the work of all the people, not just those who can max out campaign contributions.