There's a lot happening! Here are a few highlights:
a. Fox News is reporting that today's hearing is the beginning of an effort by House Republicans to restore common sense to the CPSIA. Be still my heart! Of course, readers of this space knew that the cavalry was coming. Lots of good people are pulling for change right now but the path forward will not be easy. On the one side, we have Republicans: "'There are parts of (the children’s product safety law) that need to be peeled back and thrown into the trash,' said one Republican source close to the process." And on the other side, you have the fear mongers: "'When the first children get sick from using a product with lead, it will point out the folly of their ‘common sense,’ said Nancy Cowles, executive director of Chicago-based Kids in Danger, who is testifying at Thursday’s hearing. 'It’s common sense to most people not to have lead in their products.'”
b. Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-KS) is introducing (or introduced, not sure) an amendment to the Continuing Resolution currently on the floor of the House to DE-FUND THE DATABASE! Hurray for Mike Pompeo. This move is garnering strong public support from other Republican leaders in the House. Cross your fingers. Again, there's a long road ahead. Here is the amendment:
AMENDMENT TO H.R. 1
OFFERED BY MR. POMPEO OF KANSAS
At the end of the bill (before the short title), insert the following:
SEC. __. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to carry out any of the activities described in section 6A of the Consumer Product Safety Act (15 U.S.C. 2055a).
c. The Democrats are going away meekly on the CPSIA. Yesterday, Henry Waxman together with Subcommittee Ranking Member G.K. Butterfield put out a press release entitled "New Poll Shows “Very Strong” Support for Federal Consumer Product Safety Efforts". Bringing to mind popularity polls released by Idi Amin back in the waning days of his Emperorship, the poll commissioned by Consumer Reports indicates that 98% of consumers "agreed strongly or somewhat that the federal government should play a prominent role in improving product safety". If they included my vote . . . . The Waxman/Butterfield press release references three Pompeo amendments but it is my understanding that only the database amendment above will be introduced.
The Pompeo amendment and this absurd push poll are related events. You can examine how "out of touch with reality" we apparently are by checking out the amazing poll details at this link.
d. Inez Tenenbaum has also been commissioned to push back on Pompeo. Yesterday, she posted a joint blogpost with U.S. PIRG on the topic of the database. As Carter Wood of NAM's Shopfloor blog pithily tweeted: "Hard to imagine #CPSC Commissioners Nord or Northup ever co-blogging with NAM or Rick Woldenberg the day before a cmte hearing." Carter makes an interesting point. I am not hurt, by the way . . . . He also notes: "Tenenbaum’s co-blogging at the site of a leading left-leaning activist group immediately before the hearing almost looks like a conscious poke in the eye to committee members."
Should be another interesting day today!