weekly letter

Dear Research Advocate, Did you miss our awards program last Thursday? These segments — a conversation between Dr. Anthony Fauci and Oprah Winfrey and a duet by Dr. Francis Collins and Renée Fleming — are emblematic of inspirational and affecting moments throughout this fast-moving event, which you can view in its entirety here . Bipartisan Support for Science on the Hill: In a strong signal of bipartisan support for bolstering U.S. science and technology, the Senate voted this week to invoke cloture (allow a full Senate vote on) the Endless Frontier Act, now rolled into a larger bill called the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act of 2021. Amendments to the EFA (the bill passed in committee...
Dear Research Advocate, “Special” hardly begins to describe yesterday’s extraordinary Research!America Advocacy Awards. We recognized and honored truly inspiring leaders who have been trailblazers in science, public health, and advocacy. The video of the entire virtual event is available here for sampling or to enjoy start to finish! Some highlights: President Joe Biden thanked the honorees for their “profoundly important” work and the broader scientific community for advancing human discovery. “ As we work to put an end to the pandemic, Americans are seeing what matters. It matters that we lead with science and invest in research. It isn't just about COVID-19. We have a chance to alleviate...
Dear Research Advocate, We have exciting news! Research!America’s 2021 Advocacy Awards program on Thursday, May 13 from 4-6 p.m. ET will feature Oprah Winfrey in an exclusive interview with honoree Dr. Tony Fauci. Other special guests Lester Holt, Anchor of NBC Nightly News and Dateline NBC , and NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins will be among those recognizing an extraordinary group of awardees. Don’t miss it! Register here for the event and please spread the word among friends and colleagues. Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, the event is free to all. If you would like to make a gift in recognition of the honorees, which will help support Research!America’s efforts to speed medical...
Dear Research Advocate, On his 99th day in office, President Biden delivered a policy-focused address to a joint session of Congress. It featured a science strong message, noting how our nation is falling behind in our R&D investment, very much echoing the recommendations of the Science and Technology Action Plan that we’ve mentioned regularly in this letter. I was struck that the President equated the importance of breakthroughs for health security with breakthroughs in defense security – putting these investments, at least rhetorically, on a level playing field, of equally high value for the American public. View Research!America’s statement on the President’s remarks here . On the...
Dear Research Advocate, Earth Day: Today, people around the world are taking action to better the environment and our planet. As the public clearly recognizes , threats to the environment are threats to our health. Check out this evidence-based resource from The Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health detailing the links between climate change and health. On the Hill: President Biden will give his first address to a joint session of Congress next Wednesday. If the Administration’s initial budget proposal is any indication, he will highlight the importance of robust investment in science & technology. In that context... Take Action Now: The President’s infrastructure package...
Dear Research Advocate, Budget Watch: The Biden Administration has released a “skinny budget,” a glimpse into the more detailed Fiscal Year 2022 budget proposal the President is expected to release in May. Read our statement here . The proposal places a strong emphasis on science, technology, and public health. We firmly believe this emphasis can carry over, on a bipartisan basis, to the Congressional appropriations process. With help from advocates, that is. Here’s one way to weigh in: three “Dear Colleague” letters (requests from one Member of Congress to their colleagues) are circulating in the House right now. Ask your representative to sign on to these letters, which support robust...
Dear Research Advocate, Budget Watch: President Biden is expected to release his first set of spending requests for FY22 on Friday, enabling Congress to begin consideration of the budget for the new fiscal year. The document won’t include the infrastructure and jobs plan the President unveiled last week (read our statement on the plan here ) though Biden officials say the proposals are intended to be complimentary. What will we be looking for in the FY22 budget proposal? Strong funding for NIH, CDC, FDA, NSF, AHRQ, and other key agencies and programs in the science, technology, and public health arenas. We can advocate now - use this editable email to reach out to your members of Congress...
Dear Research Advocate, Biden Administration Plan: The Biden Administration has released “ The American Jobs Plan .” The plan encompasses major investments in R&D, transportation, broadband, clean drinking water, manufacturing, and several other areas. It calls for $180 billion for “R&D and the technologies of the future.” The NSF would receive $50 billion, a portion of which would be for the creation of a technology directorate. The proposal also calls for $30 billion to improve our nation’s pandemic preparedness, including a buildout for BARDA. Research!America issued a statement on the plan. Endless Frontier: The NSF technology directorate included in The American Jobs Plan is...
Dear Research Advocate, Advocacy Then and Now: This letter marks #500 since I began this weekly conversation with you. In the first letter, I spoke out against the Budget Control Act and the severe funding caps it would (and did) impose on strategic imperatives like research. You joined with us to help secure modifications to those budget caps to enable funding increases for NIH and other research agencies. Advocacy works. Now, hundreds of letters later, the FY22 budget cycle is about to begin: reports are that President Biden will release the first details of his FY22 budget request next week, to be followed by a more detailed budget later this spring. It was heartening to hear the...
Dear Research Advocate, The Senate HELP Committee and House Energy and Commerce Committee held hearings this week to review the Biden Administration’s pandemic response and ongoing COVID-19 vaccine distribution with CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky, NIH NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci, HHS Chief Scientific Officer for the COVID Response Dr. David Kessler, and FDA CBER Director Dr. Peter Marks. In their testimonies, the Administration officials underscored how utilizing past scientific discoveries in combination with new partnerships led to the development of COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics at a record pace. They also spoke to concerns regarding equitable vaccine distribution, and how...

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America’s economic destiny lies in innovation, technology, science and research.
The Honorable John E. Porter