Thursday, February 22, 2007

Merck, Gov. Rick Perry and $45,000=?

There has been a lot of talk as to why Gov. Rick Perry came out in support of a mandatory vaccination of Guardasil for teenage girls ages 12 and up in Texas schools. Well forget the rank hypocrisy of those that pander to the religious right and forget about advocating for the safety of teenagers. You can also forget about the debate over teen promiscuity and if this action encourages it.

What it all boils down to is the money. It really is that simple with this Republican governor.

From Rawstory:

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) says that it's just a coincidence that he and eight other lawmakers received donations of $5,000 each from Merck lobbyists just a few days before mandating the drug giant's HPV cervical cancer vaccine for all females in Texas ages 12 and up.

"There's been a lot of pressure about the implications of vaccinating young girls against sexually-transmitted diseases," says CNN's Ali Velshi in the video below, "some people thinking that that encourages promiscuity at that age."

He reports though that "this thing is coming undone by word, rumor and report of connection between Rick Perry's office and Merck."

Governor Perry says that is just a coincidence that he received $5,000 from Merck along with eight other lawmakers days before his decision came down. It is also just another coincidence that his former chief of staff is now a lobbyist for Merck.

How many coincidences does it take for people to get what is going on here. All we need to do is follow the money and the connections. Merck now realizes the folly of their actions and is pulling back from lobbying the drug. The question is if they are backing down quick enough to avoid the consequences of being seen as the dirty drug dealers that they are.