Rogue animal labs and professors are opening your wallet then refusing to disclose how much they’re raking in or what they’re using it for. They think your money is an entitlement, like Social Security.
So, back in June, Waste Warrior Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) asked:
How much money did the DoD spend getting animals addicted to cocaine or forcing pigs to run on treadmills? We don’t know, and that’s a problem. I’m working to increase transparency on Washington’s culture of waste and #MakeEmSqueal.https://t.co/HBPRocqwEo
— Joni Ernst (@joniernst) June 18, 2020
It sure is! Or rather: it was!!
Thanks to Sen. Ernst’s leadership, and the incredible grassroots advocacy of our 3 million members, we’ve helped pass legislation requiring anyone receiving grant funding from the Department of Defense–which spends over $100 billion annually on R&D–to publicly disclose any and all taxpayer dollars spent on wasteful animal experiments and other projects.
The transparency measure (see NDAA Sec. 2374b), which was inspired by a WCW investigation and passed the Senate earlier this year, was just passed by the House and Senate as part of the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (the NDAA), which is the DOD’s major funding bill. The legislation is now headed to the president’s desk to be signed into law.
With my efforts as a combat veteran and member of @SASCMajority, this year’s bipartisan #NDAA helps protect our troops, promote emerging technologies, preserve tax dollars, and prolong Iowa’s role in helping maintain our national defense. https://t.co/rwgtN2lslu
— Joni Ernst (@SenJoniErnst) December 11, 2020
This is a major victory in the war on waste.
The Department of Defense doesn’t want you to know how much of your money it’s wasting forcing animals to fight in Fight Club-style matches, getting animals drunk and high on cocaine, feeding animals high-fat diets to make them obese, forcing pigs to run on treadmills, and examining why puppies are so doggone friendly. (No seriously. As Sen. Ernst highlighted, the DOD spent $209,000 taxpayer dollars looking at how much time various dogs spent trying to get into a box of sausage, versus how much time they spent trying to get a person’s attention.)
Transparency is one of the best ways to hold federal agencies and taxpayer-funded animal experimenters accountable for wasting money and abusing animals!
Taxpayers have a right to know how $20 billion—yes billion—per year in taxpayer dollars are being spent by Uncle Same on animal experiments at the DOD and other agencies, and this new law is a BIG STEP toward holding the government accountable.
So here’s what comes next:
Working with WCW, Sen. Ernst introduced the Cost Openness and Spending Transparency Act (S. 807)—known as the COST Act—to apply this spending disclosure law across the entire government and withhold funding from institutions that don’t comply. The bill is cosponsored by Senators James Lankford (R-OK), Rand Paul (R-KY), Mike Braun (R-IN) and David Perdue (R-GA).
Federal law already requires anyone receiving funds from the National Institutes of Health–the leading funder of animal testing in the world–to publicly disclose details of their taxpayer funding, but as WCW documented, recalcitrant NIH-funded labs have been blatantly violating the law for years with no consequences. For instance, one rogue university lab exposed by WCW has spent $65 million taxpayer dollars on a project that includes invasive experiments on monkeys to see how their brains respond to music.
Does this sound all right to you? (NO!)
Don’t you think you have the right to know which rogue labs are using your money to torture monkeys and other animals? (YES!)
So does an overwhelming majority of your fellow taxpayers! Polls show that 72 percent of voters—80 percent of Republicans and 70 percent of Democrats—want taxpayer-funded institutions to disclose how much public money they spend on animal experiments.
As Sen. Ernst said, “The COST Act will guarantee Americans can see how their hard-earned tax dollars are being spent and decide for themselves whether or not the price is right.”
Let’s get the COST Act passed! Animal experimenters are not above the law and any that violate spending transparency laws don’t deserve to get your money.