As you know, we at PharmTech have been soliciting the press officers for the two major presidential candidates to share with us their plans for the FDA and other programs that can affect the pharmaceutical industry. Neither campaign has been forthcoming. So we have to keep track of the candidates’ statements as they come.
Late last week, while discussing spending priorities, McCain vice-presidential nominee, Sarah Palin, derided the government for spending money on “fruit fly research in France. I kid you not,” said Governor Palin. (To see the comment in its context, please see the video on YouTube.)
I don’t know whether this means that the McCain/Palin ticket is not aware that fruit fly research has given modern science the underpinnings for all the genetic research of the past 40 or so years (including the specific research project to which she alludes, which was conducted not in France, but at the University of North Carolina, and which in fact is uncovering important insights into the genetics of autism), or whether they do know and still don’t think it’s worthy of government funding.
In either event, I seriously question the wisdom of placing our science policy in the hands of such people.