Help Expose Anti-Gun “Junk” Science

Subject: Oppose CDC-Funded Junk Anti-Gun Science

(Thursday, April 1, 1999) — The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is considering a very important rule. If we win this, we can expose all the phony science used to justify many restrictions on firearms ownership.

This rule would directly impact on the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The CDC has often helped to finance anti-gun ‘junk science.’ Many of these findings have found their way into popular medical journals– such as the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and the New England Journal of Medicine– and from these sources, into the mainstream media.

Unfortunately, the research behind their data seldom gets turned over to the public for validation by other researchers.

Adoption of the rule would force the Federal government to turn over all the data and research behind the “studies” used to support Federal intervention in our private lives.


See the attached letter, then send your letter or e-mail your comments. Below is contact information.

F. James Charney, Policy Analyst
Office of Management and Budget
Room 6025, New Executive Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20503
Email comments to: [email protected]
Phone number: 202-395-3993.

***** sample letter *****

April 1, 1999

Mr. F. James Charney, Policy Analyst
Office of Management and Budget
Room 6025, New Executive Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20503

Dear Mr. Charney:

Last year, Senator Richard Shelby included a provision in the Omnibus Appropriations Act for FY 1999 (PL 105-277) that would allow public access to raw data from research studies funded by the Federal Government through grants and agreements with research universities and other institutions.

To implement this new law, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) published in the Federal Register on February 4, 1999 a proposed revision to OMB Circular A-110 and requested public comments on that revision.

I am writing to express our strong support for the Shelby provision.

The new law is of critical importance to the American public. For the first time the public would be able to obtain, through the Freedom of Information Act, the raw data collected and analyzed under federal research grants and agreements. Instead of being presented with only the conclusions of research studies, the public would be able to obtain for the first time the basis for those conclusions.

The importance of this provision and its ramifications for the American public cannot be overstated. The Federal government funds a significant portion of all the research conducted in this country. The results of this research have affected almost every aspect of American life, from government regulations to the public’s general understanding of major public and social policy issues, including:

* Social policy decisions on diverse issues such as the family, education, crime, drugs, and guns;

* Environmental, health and safety regulations affecting business and the American public on a day-to day basis;

* Economic policy decisions on issues such as tax rates, the Federal budget, and government spending.

Without the ability to obtain the raw data from the research studies used to support these policy and regulatory decisions, the public cannot independently judge for itself the validity of the decisions. The public deserves to know the basis upon which the government makes decisions and have the ability to determine for itself whether these conclusions and the resulting policy decisions are warranted.

The need for this legislation is underscored by the growing regulatory burden and the complexity of existing rules. Each year, the Federal government considers over 4,000 regulations. The total regulatory burden for the country is now estimated at over $600 billion. Unless businesses and others impacted by these rules are able to access the research data supporting the government’s findings, they will be severely limited in their ability to understand the basis of the proposed rule and engage in a meaningful debate.

I urge you to move expeditiously to implement the new law in a manner that reflects the rights of the American public and allows the public the broadest possible access to federally funded research data. Put simply, the taxpayers who paid for the research should be able to see it.