Rand Paul Misleads With Statements On NIH, Fruit Flies

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The earlier increases, from the mid-1990s through 2003, are still evident even after adjusting for inflation, rising from about $18 billion to $35 billion over eight years in 2014 dollars. Notably, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (known as the stimulus bill) did inject almost $9 billion of extra funding into NIH in 2009 and 2010; sequestration, however, required a cut of $1.55 billion from NIH’s 2013 budget. Paul’s spokesman did not mention these as part of the senator’s calculation.

One other measure shows the decreasing emphasis on funding basic science research. From 2003 to 2014, the NIH budget in unadjusted dollars rose by 11 percent. The total federal government spending, meanwhile, rose by 62 percent. These same calculations using inflation-adjusted dollars show a decrease in NIH budgeting of 13.9 percent, and an increase in federal spending of 25.9 percent.

Paul also said the budget specifically for infectious-disease research had increased; the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (part of NIH) actually saw similar stagnation to the overall budget, with a slight decline when inflation is considered. The NIAID budget was $3.7 billion in 2003, equivalent to —> Read More Here


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