Skip to comments.Rick Perry's Bad Medicine
Posted on 08/17/2011 4:41:52 PM PDT by Brices Crossroads
Texas, we have a problem. Your GOP governor is running for president against Barack Obama. Yet, one of his most infamous acts as executive of the nation's second-largest state smacks of every worst habit of the Obama administration. And his newly crafted rationalizations for the atrocious decision are positively Clintonesque.
In February 2007, Texas Gov. Rick Perry signed a shocking executive order forcing every sixth-grade girl to submit to a three-jab regimen of the Gardasil vaccine. He also forced state health officials to make the vaccine available "free" to girls ages 9 to 18. The drug, promoted by manufacturer Merck as an effective shield against the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV) and genital warts, as well as cervical cancer, had only been approved by the Food and Drug Administration eight months prior to Perry's edict.
Gardasil's wear-off time and long-term side effects have yet to be determined. "Serious questions" remain about its "overall effectiveness," according to the Journal of the American Medical Association. Even the chair of the federal panel that recommended Gardasil for children opposes mandating it as a condition of school enrollment. Young girls and boys are simply not at an increased risk of contracting HPV in the classroom the way they are at risk of contracting measles or other school-age communicable diseases.
Perry defenders pointed to a bogus "opt-out" provision in his mandate "to protect the right of parents to be the final authority on their children's health care." But requiring parents to seek the government's permission to keep an untested drug out of their kids' veins is a plain usurpation of their authority. Translation: Ask your bureaucratic overlord to determine if a Gardasil waiver is right for you.
Libertarians and social conservatives alike slammed Perry's reckless disregard for parental rights and individual liberty. The Republican-dominated legislature also balked. In May 2007, both chambers passed bills overturning the governor's unilaterally imposed health order.
Fast-forward five years. After announcing his 2012 presidential bid this weekend, Perry now admits he "didn't do my research well enough" on the Gardasil vaccine before stuffing his bad medicine down Texans' throats. On Monday, he added: "That particular issue is one that I readily stand up and say I made a mistake on. I listened to the legislature ... and I agreed with their decision."
Perry downplayed his underhanded maneuver as an aberrational "error," and then gobsmackingly he spun the debacle as a display of his great character: "One of the things I do pride myself on, I listen. When the electorate says, 'Hey, that's not what we want to do,' we backed up, took a look at what we did."
Are these non-apology apologies enough to quell the concerns of voters looking for a presidential candidate who will provide a clear, unmistakable contrast to Barack Obama? Not by a long shot.
How Obama-like was this scandal? Let us count the ways:
TRAMPLING OF THE DELIBERATIVE PROCESS
Since Day One, President Obama has short-circuited transparency, public debate and congressional oversight. How can Perry effectively challenge the White House's czar fetish, stealth recess appointments, selective waiver-mania and backdoor legislating through administrative orders when Perry himself employed the very same process as governor? Not only did Perry defend going above the heads of elected state legislators, but his office also falsely claimed the legislature had no right to repeal the executive order. "The order is effective until Perry or a successor changes it, and the Legislature has no authority to repeal it," Perry spokeswoman Krista Moody told The Washington Post in February 2007.
When both the House and Senate repealed the law six weeks later, Perry did not as he now claims listen humbly or "agree with their decision."
HUMAN SHIELD DEMAGOGUERY.
In response to the legislature's rebuke, the infuriated governor attacked those who supported repeal as "shameful" spreaders of "misinformation" who were putting "women's lives" at risk. Borrowing a tried-and-true Alinskyite page from the progressive left, Perry surrounded himself with female cervical cancer victims and deflected criticism of his imperial tactics with emotional anecdotes.
He then lionized himself and the minority of politicians who voted against repeal of his Gardasil order. "They will never have to think twice about whether they did the right thing. No lost lives will occupy the confines of their conscience, sacrificed on the altar of political expediency." Perry, of course, has now put his own ghastly Gardasil order on that same altar but with no apology to all those he demonized and exploited along the way.
Most noxious of all, Perry wraps his big government health mandate in the "pro-life" mantle. But the do-gooder theater is a distraction from the business-as-usual back-scratching and astro-turfing that are Obama hallmarks. Perry's former chief of staff Mike Toomey is a top Merck lobbyist. Toomey's mother-in-law headed a Merck-funded front group pushing vaccination mandates. And Merck's political action committee pitched in $6,000 to Perry's re-election campaign in 2007.
The PerryCare executive fiat was not simply a one-off mistake explained away by lack of "research." It exposed a fundamental lapse in both political and policy judgments, an appalling lack of ethics and a disturbing willingness to smear principled defenders of limited government who object to the Nanny State using their children as guinea pigs.
Trusting Rick Perry's tea party credentials is a perilous shot in the dark.
"The PerryCare executive fiat was not simply a one-off mistake explained away by lack of "research." It exposed a fundamental lapse in both political and policy judgments, an appalling lack of ethics and a disturbing willingness to smear principled defenders of limited government who object to the Nanny State using their children as guinea pigs."
So, I guess we need to keep looking until we find a candidate who has never done a single thing we don’t agree with. Awaiting such an ideal is what’s keeping us from getting anywhere. I can’t think of anyone who I agree 100% with, but Perry has got some really good positive credentials as well. I personally like Palin, but I’m not yet convinced that she’s electable. Perry is my second choice.
Slick-Rick is not the conservative that some on FR try to make him out to be. He’s a self-serving career politician who’s more beholden to big business and his globalist masters than he is the American people. And Im convinced he and his supporters like it that way.
Perry hasn’t just done SOME things I disagree with. He has done a LOTof things I disagree with. Gardasil, instate tuition for children of illegals. Opposition to the border defense. Doubling state spending in TX on his watch. Opposing the Arizona law. Supporting Proabortion Rudy Giuliani in 2008 for President, the only GOP governor to do so. How much more do you need to conclude that he is bad news.
He is not a conservative in any meaningful sense.
Perry is not a conservative in any sense. He just says he is and, frankly, his word cannot be trusted.
Perry is never gonna sell. Conservatives are already onto him, and he has only been a candidate for 5 days.
Gardasil is a drug developed by Merck & Co.. It is supposed to prevent cervical cancer caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved it in June of 2006 and subsequently recommended vaccination in females aged 11 and 12, before they become sexual active. Since it is not effective against an existing infection, it must be given before a sexually-transmitted HPV infection occurs.
Governor Perry issued an Executive Order (EO) (RP#65, February, 2007) which mandated that all Texas girls be vaccinated prior to their admission to the sixth grade. Parents were allowed to opt out of the mandate by filling out an affidavit.
Perry was rebuked by both houses of the Texas legislature which overturned his EO by a veto-proof margin. Seeing the writing on the wall, Perry did not sign the law. He subsequently rescinded RP#65 with another EO (RP#74) and the issue is now dead in Texas. At least 18 other states (notably New York and Michigan) were considering similar actions with Gardasil, but none were actually implemented. Here is a link to additional data on other states decisions, from a 2007 article in Time Magazine Health.
Perrys negatives related to the Gardasil issue were:
There are still some who are convinced that Merck contributed more than a paltry $6,000 to Perry. They are simply wrong. Merck gave two checks, one for $1,000 and another for $5,000 to Perry in the 2006 election timeframe (in 2008, they contributed a whopping $2,500). Here is a source to view all of Perrys contributions: ProPublica. In fact, Merck has only contributed $23,500 to Perry over a 1998-2010 span, not exactly George Soros money. For comparison, from 2000-2006 Merck gave $2,460,000 to state politicians across 40 states.
The other side of the story:
Gardasil was believed to be a way to stop certain types of cancer among young women. Studies appearing in The New England Journal of Medicine in 2007 found that Gardasil was nearly 100 percent effective in preventing precancerous cervical lesions caused by the the strains that Gardasil protects against. Gardasils effectiveness increased when given to girls and young women before they become sexually active. Gardasil was found to be extremely effective in preventing several (but not all) of the strains of HPV known to cause cervical cancer and genital warts.
Some critics maintain that Gardasil has a record of very serious safety issues. That obvious attempt to further tarnish Perrys image by intimating that not only did he do the bidding of Merck in ordering the vaccinations, he did so without considering the possible serious side effects. There is little doubt that Governor Perry knew a great deal more about Gardasil at the time than those critics do now. The CDC has been following Gardasil since its licensing and some current facts follow. Taken from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website:
Since licensure, CDC and FDA have been closely monitoring the safety of HPV vaccines. As of June 22, 2011, approximately 35 million doses of Gardasil® have been distributed in the U.S. and the safety monitoring system (VAERS) received a total of 18,727 reports of adverse events following Gardasil® vaccination. As with all VAERS reports, serious events may or may not have been caused by the vaccine.
Of the total number of VAERS reports following Gardasil®, 92% were considered to be non-serious, and 8% were considered serious. Out of 35,000,000 doses distributed, there were 1,498 occasions of serious complications; that equates to a .0000428 chance that a dose will cause a serious adverse reaction. Hardly enough to consider the vaccine a very serious safety issue as claimed by some critics. Apparently, they are too lazy to do a little research.
As of June, 2011, the CDC says: Based on all of the information we have today, CDC recommends HPV vaccination for the prevention of most types of cervical cancer. As with all approved vaccines, CDC and FDA will continue to closely monitor the safety of HPV vaccines. Check out the CDCs statements about Gardasil for yourself. And specifically check out the Summary at the end for the CDCs conclusion about Gardasils effectiveness.
In Gardasil, Merck believed that they had a credible, FDA-approved, CDC recommended, fact-backed case for vaccinating young women and lobbied state officials to do so. Were they trying to make money on the drug? Without a doubt, thats what a business does.
Perry maintains that the justification for his executive order making the shot mandatory was twofold: 1) that the vaccine offered a chance to save lives that might have otherwise been taken away by cervical cancer and, 2) that insurance companies wouldnt cover the $360 cost of the vaccine ($120 for each of a 3-shot regimen) when it was simply an optional recommended vaccine. That put it out of the reach for most low-income Texans. This from the Time Magazine article (linked above), Some pediatricians and gynecologists are refusing to stock Gardasil because many insurance companies reimburse so little for the vaccine, which costs $360 for the three required doses.
When Perry mandated Gardasil, it would have become part of a school-related vaccine package which was then covered by insurance for simply the cost of a co-pay.
An update: from Perrys Speech in New Hampshire at the Home of New Hampshire Deputy Speaker Pam Tucker (8/13/2011):
When a voter in New Hampshire confronted Perry on the Gardasil issue, heres what he said, I signed an executive order that allowed for an opt-out, but the fact of the matter is I didnt do my research well enough to understand that we needed to have a substantial conversation with our citizenry, he said. I hate cancer. Let me tell you, as a son who has a mother and father who are both cancer survivors.
Perry said hed invested governmet resources in cancer cures, adding, I hate cancer. And this HPV, we were seeing young ladies die at the early age. What we should have done was a program that frankly should have allowed them to opt in, or some type of program like that, but heres what I learned when you get too far out in front of the parade they will let you know. And thats exactly what our legislature did.
A cynic may not buy his explanation, but Obama would never admit to a mistake at all.
Agree or disagree, at least he listened to the people and backed off.
He only announced this past Saturday?
Welcome to national politics Rick—I like what you have been saying lately and I wish you luck...
You are going to need it.
As you say, there is a long list of things over the years, which put Rick Perry somewhat to the left of George Bush.
Would you rather we discuss this on this board or have him nominated and let the left have their field day? There is so much more to this story. He is not a knight in shining armor like he is being made out to be. And his baggage has baggage. Is this what we really want?
We’re in agreement on these matters. No doubt about it.
If the worst thing Perry has done is this vaccine deal then Perry is good to go. Malkin goes off the deep end in this article. Of course people with an agenda will use anything to try and trash someone. When the protest is out of proportion I am even more inclined to take a closer look at the candidate they are trashing. Perry has been around for a while and has a long record so there should lots of things to disagree with yet they seem to harp on this vaccine bill. Good luck with that.
Did you even read her column before posting your spam? Spam hardly serves as a rebuttal to her well supported charges of trampling the deliberative process , human shield demagoguery and cronyism.
Spam convinces no one. Most people don;’t read it. Why do you post it?
Not one Texas student got the vaccine because the legislature stopped the program before the schools implemented it. Malkin is misleading on that point.
The worst part was that Perry’s chief of staff was a lobbyist for Merck. That was the most odious part of this episode.
If Romney cannot escape his liberal past why should Slick-Rick be allowed to escape his?
ONE BIG FACT MISSING.
Perry killed the PLAN immediately after hearing about its flaws.
So, he listened to the public and killed the plan and it never went into effect .
So who cares anymore ?
I love Michelle Malkin. I don’t think there is a conservative blogger out there who is better than her. Her columns are grounded in fact and she is reasonable in what she writes. I admire her greatly.
However, I hear her on this issue but its not convincing. Perry is not going to engage in “crony capitalism” for $6,000. He explained his decision and said he made a mistake. He obviously hasn’t convinced a lot of people but I’m pretty conservative and he has convinced me. Besides, t
The “crony capitalism” charge is really an indictment of someone spending government money on cronies. Perry has a record of cutting spending. This is not a significant issue for me in supporting him.
And we haven’t even gotten to the wet kisses that the Hamas front group CAIR has been blowing Perry and his associations with radical imams.
Perry is toast. Burnt toast.
Perry was defeated on the issue, and was getting clobbered in public opinion. He tried to put sprinkles on a turd and proclaim that he mistook it for chocolate. You don’t have to be a cynic to smell stench on this one.
And how about his behind the scenes skulduggery trying to push through his super highway that most Texans hated. He was unresponsive to requests for information about it for years. This guy is more trouble for America. Bob
Taxpayer money for wind and solar: Check
Open borders: Check
Texas Dream act: Check
You're right. I ignore the pro-Perry spam just as I would ignore the same were it favoring Romney.
Huh? Then what was the legislature voting against, if Pander Perry had already killed his own plan? Bob
I voted for Gov. Perry 3 times.
Your phrase has captured the essence of Perry.He has a lot of people on FR hood-winked.
Even though, he would be a helluva of a lot better than what we have now in the Whitehouse.
I am not ready to support him for President, I am holding out for a real conservative choice this time around.
I love it!
If the shoe fits...
And that one fits like a custom made boot.
You nailed it. This is worthy of a discussion, but Malkin way over-played in this one. This issue simply is about a 3 on a 10 scale. The illegal immigration problem is about the only major issue I have with Perry, and will evaluate how he handles it as a national candidate. Few are great on this issue, he's in the middle, and needs to present a reasonable plan to earn conservative votes. Bachmann gets a good grade, but as a third term congressman hasn't dealt with it the way a border state governor has.
ONE BIG FACT MISSING.
Perry killed the PLAN immediately after hearing about its flaws.
So, he listened to the public and killed the plan and it never went into effect .
So who cares anymore ?”
Absolutely false. The legislature killed it by reversing his executive order by veto-proof majorities. He could do nothing about it (except accuse the legislators of being anti-life and pro-cancer). Didn’t you even read the article before posting this falsehood (and I am being generous in referring to it as such)
From comments on the site.
We expect the Governor to direct the people that he appoints, right? The Governor is responsible for management of the Executive Branch, including the Department of State Health Services. He appoints the head of the DSHS, who supervises the people who decide which vaccines will be mandatory. Texas’ Legislature modified Chapter 38.001 of the Texas Education Code over the years to mandate certain vaccines and allow the DSHS to add other mandated vaccines without Legislative oversight. Just before the Gardasil controversy, the Department had mandated Chicken Pox and Hepatitis A, which are both manufactured using cultures of human fetal tissue obtained at an abortion.
The Governor’s Executive Order (RP 65) that caused all the controversy also ordered the director of DSHS to make it easier for parents to opt out of vaccines. The Legislature had changed the law from opt in to a requirement to opt out once for all the school years. Next, they changed to a two year limit on the opt out, and then in 2005, the Legislature restricted the period to one year and required a new State form bearing a secure seal. Parents had to go to Austin or start early in the summer. There were bureaucrats who maintained that the only way to get the form with the seal was to go to Austin, find the right office and make the request in person. Perry used his EO to tell the Director of DSHS to make the request (and the seal) available on-line, making it easier to opt out.
In fact, the reason for the Executive Order was to speed up private insurance coverage and to make it easier for parents to exercise their right to opt out.
The Federal government doesn’t have the authority to mandate vaccines in the States. Not yet, not exactly. However, thirty days after the National Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommended the vaccine, Texas was required by Federal law to buy and distribute the vaccine in the Vaccines for Children program. The program provides vaccines without cost to uninsured children up to age 21, those who are insured by Medicaid, and those whose private insurance does not pay for vaccines at all. In effect, the only families who have to pay for Gardasil for whom the State of Texas will not pay, anyway, under Federal law are those whose private insurance will only pay for mandated vaccines.
Posted by: Beverly Nuckols, MD
Tue Aug 16, 2011 11:52 PM
“If Romney cannot escape his liberal past why should Slick-Rick be allowed to escape his?”
And Slick Rick has even less of an excuse than Willard since he was in TX, a conservative state. Perry was only as conservative as he absolutely had to be.
How much money did Rick Perry get from Merck?
Let me answer for you. 24 MILLION dollars.
Explain that away.
Thanks for your input. It's always good to hear from a Texan who is not enamored with the thought of having the only Republican governor to endorse PRO-ABORTION candidate Rudy Giuliani be our next president.
I am tired of the non stop trashing of our candidates which will get the Marxist reelected . Perry has been for five days and all I see are non stop attacks from the Obama state media and crap here /. Who do you support then ?
I lived through this in Texas having a daughter this age whose mother had cervical cancer. I was concerned as a Conservative Texan about Perry's actions about the new-ness of the drug and the fear that my daughter may take it as tacit permission to engage in sexual promiscuity because I gave her a drug to protect her while doing it.
But what I found is that I believe that Perry's heart was in the right place, he got spanked for it and learned from it.
Your a little TOO EAGER to DESTROY PERRY HERE .
Who do you working for here ?
Who do you support again ?
Perry been in for 5 days and the
non stop attacks here are beyond suspicious .
Perry is a decent option along with Palin and Bachman and none of these options are perfect.
Opting-Out of HPV Vaccine WILL NOT WORK for Many in Texas
Governor Perry is misleading legislators and families in Texas by claiming that they will be able to opt-out of having their 6th grade daughter vaccinated with the vaccine for the sexually transmitted virus HPV. For many families currently, the exemption isnt worth the piece of paper it is printed on. Besides the simple fact that parents should not have to get permission from the state to make informed consent medical decisions for their own children, here are four reasons why opting-out of sate mandated vaccines doesnt work for many families in Texas:
Opt-out or Conscientious Exemption to Vaccination Process is a Bureaucratic Nightmare
To get the exemption form, parents must first submit a written form to State Health Department in Austin which forces the disclosure of the childs full name, birthdate, and mailing address. The Health Department takes those written requests and creates yet another form on which they print the childs same personal information that the parent had to send to health department, and the Health Department sometimes takes weeks to mail out these forms inevitably disrupting the childs school attendance. The Health Department only sends the forms by U.S. mail, and once the parent receives the forms, they must be notarized within 90 days of submitting them and then repeatedly resubmitted every 2 years even though there is no expiration set in statute.  Because the Health Department further eroded parental rights by publishing more rules getting rid of provisional enrolment for exemptions, (families used to have 30 days at the beginning of school to get their paperwork in), now schools participate in aggressive misleading education campaigns touting no shots no school while not informing families of the exemption or the instructions how to obtain it.
Private Schools Deny Admission
The Texas attorney general issued an opinion in April of 2006, ga0420, that states that private schools do not have to accept the conscience exemption to vaccination in Texas Law, and many private schools do not. For example, the Dallas Diocese for Catholic Schools policy number 5024 states, Schools will comply with immunization requirements established by the Texas Catholic Conference Education Department. Conscientious objections/waivers are not accepted in schools of the Diocese.  Every new vaccine mandate causes more children with valid legal exemptions to be denied their private school education.
Doctors Refuse Medical Care
Even though you may be able to get a piece of paper from the state health department affirming your right to refuse state mandated vaccines for your child, just try and find a doctor who will honor it! According to a recent study published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 39% of pediatricians surveyed said they would throw kids out of practices who are not vaccinated.  PROVE has documented this rampant problem of doctors dismissing families utilizing a vaccine exemption in Texas to the legislature in previous sessions. Please review our report entitled The Erosion of Public Trust & Informed Consent through Immunization Harassment, Discrimination and Coercion prepared for the House Public Health Committee in 2005. 
Insurance Rates Rise and Accessibility Affected
Responsible parents who have secured health care coverage for their children will be forced to pay higher insurance rates whether they want the HPV vaccine or not. Even if you opt-out of the HPV vaccine mandate for Gardasil by Merck by securing a conscientious exemption waiver, there is no way for Texas parents to opt-out of the corresponding rise in their insurance premiums. § 1367.053. (a) (2) of the Insurance Code REQUIRES that any vaccine required be law must be covered by insurance.  This first-dollar coverage requirement results in corresponding direct hiking of insurance premiums to meet costs, and for a vaccine as expensive as this one, an HPV vaccine mandate risks putting premiums for basic health care coverage out of reach financially for even more Texas families. Additionally, we have received complaints from families where insurance companies are harassing parents with letters and discriminating on coverage based on whether or not the child has had all their state mandated vaccines.
It appears Perry likes Executive Orders just like Obama does.
Who gives a crap about Gardisil. I’m still voting for Rick Perry because he will beat Bammy Boy by 15 points
I suppose it all comes down to your definition of “spam.” Spam has a “canned” quality. (And it’s not “spam” because you don’t like the message it delivers.) That was a well-written comprehensive piece of work.
Great point. Bear in mind, Perry is claiming to be conservative now because he is facing other conservatives in his bid for the Republican nomination. Suppose he gets it? How liberal will he be when his opponent is Barack Obama?
Perry is a snake.
“Perry’s heart was in the right place,”
His heart is NOT in the right place if he is trampling on parental rights. His heart is not in the right place if he is accusing legislators adn citizen who disagree with him of being anti-life and pro-cancer. And his heart is not in the right place if his administration is thick as thieves with Merck, taking money and having close associates who are lobbying.
He “learned from it and apologized” (as you say) only a few days ago after being scourged by conservatives all over the blogosphere. Such conversions , upon entering a Presidential election, are highly unpersuasive. His apology reeks of political expediency.
Romney’s flip flops are not convincing. Perry’s are even less so, since he comes from a conservative state and his deviations from conservatism are even less understandable, unless, as appears likely, he actually believes them.
After all, he was Al Gore’s state Chairman in 1988.
Brices Crossroads is an unabashed Palin cheerleader...BC has done the same trashing of Bachmann.
I have no problem with people reporting facts, but there are freepers who are intent on destroying any candidate other than their own, without being honest about their agenda.
You explain it. He got $5000 from Merck
“In 2003, Gov. Rick Perry signed a state law that allows parents to opt out of vaccination programs for reasons of “conscience,” including religion or any other rationale. The law is a response to a number of vocal parents who have become convinced that vaccines are responsible for the dramatic rise in autism cases over the past decadedespite the fact that several large, peer-reviewed studies have found no evidence that this is the case. According to data from the Texas Department of State Health Services, in 2003, parents of 2,314 children applied for an exemption. By the end of 2009, the total had reached beyond 12,600.”
Based on head to head Obama v. Republican Candidate polls, Romney is the most electable, Paul is the 2nd most electable, and the rest are bunched up behind Romney and Paul.
OK. So...let's say Perry is the nominee...because Palin is not going to run. I've said it over and over again. She's out.
Come November 2012...you gonna vote for him...or hand Barry a second term so he can put the fatal bullet into our country. Which one?
It's not that simple. This guy wanted to mandate vaccinations against sexually transmitted diseases parents be damned. That's a lot to swallow for me forgetting the fact that he never researched the ill effects of gardasil.
My children and grandchildren are not the governments property and the fact that Rick Perry thought differently makes me wanto to smack him in the mouth rather than vote for him.