health

Congress votes down Sen. Durbin's anti-supplement amendment, as well as Sen. Paul's freedom of health speech amendment

Thursday, May 24, 2012 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: Dick Durbin, supplements, Senate

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(NaturalNews) A sneaky, eleventh-hour attempt by Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) to essentially shut down the supplement industry alongside an amendment pertaining to prescription drug user fees has failed. In a vote of 77-20, the U.S. Senate voted to table Amendment No. 2127, which would have created "duplicative, unnecessary, and unexpected new regulations" for the supplement industry that could have resulted in many common supplements being pulled from store shelves.

To the surprise of the entire natural health community, the unveiling of Amdt. No 2127 came late Tuesday afternoon, according to the Natural Products Insider (NPI), just one day before the bill to which it was attached, S. 3187, the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act, was set for a vote. But because the natural health community immediately sprung into action to oppose Amdt. No 2127, it was successfully defeated.

"(Amdt. No 2127 is) based on the misguided presumption that the current regulatory framework for dietary supplements is flawed and that the FDA lacks authority to regulate these products," said Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Ut.) on the Senate Floor, in opposition to the amendment. He added that the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHEA) already provisions the FDA with the tools it needs to properly regulate supplements, and that Amdt. No 2127 only "serves to punish all responsible companies with its overreaching mandates."

Amdt. No 2127 would have unnecessarily required all manufacturers of dietary supplements to register them with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) within 30 days, even though Title III of the Public Health Security and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002 already requires registration. This 30-day requirement, in other words, was designed to be impossible for supplement companies to comply with, which would have resulted in many of them simply being pulled from the market.

According to the U.S. Senate's Legislation & Records voting page (http://www.senate.gov), the 20 U.S. Senators that voted against tabling this heinous attack on the supplement industry were:

Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ar.)
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Ca.)
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca.)
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Il.)
Sen. Benjamin Cardin (D-Md.)
Sen. Al Franken (D-Mn.)
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Mn.)
Sen. Claire McCaskil (D-Mo.)
Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mt.)
Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.)
Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.)
Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.)
Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nv.)
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.)
Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.)
Sen. John "Jack" Reed (D-R.I.)
Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.)
Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.)
Sen. Bernard "Bernie" Sanders (I-Vt.)
Sen. John "Jay" Rockefeller (D-W.V.)

Senate also votes down Sen. Rand's amendment to reign in FDA, restore freedom of health speech

While it is great news that the Senate was smart enough to reject Sen. Durbin's flagrant assault on the supplement industry, this same Senate voted to reject an amendment proposed by Sen. Rand Paul that would have stopped the FDA from bullying farmers and abusing its power. It also would have restored freedom of health speech by stopping the FDA from censoring the truthful health claims of dietary supplements.

You can read Sen. Paul's press release announcement about his amendment here:
http://www.naturalnews.com/035966_Rand_Paul_FDA_censorship.html

According to the vote tally, the following 78 U.S. Senators voted against Sen. Paul's amendment to stop FDA tyranny and restore freedom of health speech:

Sen. Mark Begich (D-Ak.)
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Ak.)
Sen. Jefferson "Jeff" Sessions (R-Al.)
Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Al.)
Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ar.)
Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Az.)
Sen. John McCain (R-Az.)
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca.)
Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Co.)
Sen. Mark Udall (D-Co.)
Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Ct.)
Sen. Thomas Carper (D-De.)
Sen. Chris Coons (D-De.)
Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fl.)
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fl.)
Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.)
Sen. John "Johnny" Isakson (R-Ga.)
Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hi.)
Sen. Charles "Chuck" Grassley (R-Ia.)
Sen. Thomas "Tom" Harkin (D-Ia.)
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Il.)
Sen. Daniel Coats (R-In.)
Sen. Richard Lugar (R-In.)
Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Ks.)
Sen. Pat Robers (R-Ks.)
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)
Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.)
Sen. Scott Brown (R-Ma.)
Sen. John Kerry (D-Ma.)
Sen. Benjamin Cardin (D-Md.)
Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.)
Sen. Susan Collins (R-Me.)
Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Me.)
Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mi.)
Sen. Al Franken (D-Mn.)
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Mn.)
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.)
Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.)
Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Ms.)
Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mt.)
Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mt.)
Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.)
Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.)
Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.)
Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.)
Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Ne.)
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.)
Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.)
Sen. Robert "Bob" Menendez (D-N.J.)
Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.)
Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.)
Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nv.)
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.)
Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.)
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Oh.)
Sen. Robert "Bob" Portman (R-Oh.)
Sen. James "Jim" Inhofe (R-Ok.)
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Or.)
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Or.)
Sen. Robert Casey (D-Pa.)
Sen. John "Jack" Reed (D-R.I.)
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.)
Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.)
Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tn.)
Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tn.)
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Ut.)
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.)
Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.)
Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.)
Sen. Bernard "Bernie" Sanders (I-Vt.)
Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wa.)
Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wa.)
Sen. Herbert "Herb" Kohl (D-Wi.)
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.)
Sen. John "Jay" Rockefeller (D-W.V.)
Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wy.)
Sen. Michael Enzi (R-Wy.)

Sources for this article include:

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/votes/112-2012/s110

http://www.citizens.org/?p=2990

http://www.naturalproductsinsider.com

http://www.anh-usa.org

http://politics.nytimes.com/congress/votes/112/senate/2/111

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