You Defeated the Durbin Amendment!

May 29, 2012
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Big group of young jumping people.What a tremendous outpouring of grassroots activism! But we need to stay vigilant.

As you probably know by now, your extraordinary response to our emergency Action Alert last week helped ensure a stunning defeat of the sneaky anti-supplement Durbin amendment by a vote of 77 to 20. Senator Dick Durbin had offered it at the last minute as an amendment to an FDA bill.

His amendment picked up some pieces from his previous bill. This new attempt to surreptitiously push his agenda through is precisely the sort of thing we predicted he might try.

After we sent out our Action Alert email last Thursday—something we do rarely, since we don’t like to burden our readers with additional emails unless there is something truly urgent—nearly 90,000 messages were sent to Congress in less than 24 hours. This was an astounding, and deeply heartening, response. Thank you! The overwhelming defeat of the amendment shows what citizens working together toward a common goal can achieve.

One of the things we found alarming in this amendment saga was the amount of misinformation in Sen. Durbin’s speech on the Senate floor last Wednesday. As you can see for yourself if you go to the C-SPAN video of the session and, in the Timeline section, scroll down and click on the 05:43:30 segment, you’ll hear Sen. Durbin say, “No one tests dietary supplements….Companies that make these products may test them if they wish, there’s no requirement under law that they test them, and there’s certainly no agency of government that tests dietary supplements….There’s just no testing involved.”

This is completely untrue—supplement companies, by law, must comply with the Dietary Supplement Current Good Manufacturing Practices (CGMPs) and must conduct testing throughout the production process as well as testing the finished product for quality control. As with the pharmaceutical industry, the burden is on supplement companies to test their own products, because in the end they are liable should FDA choose to take enforcement action against them.

One reason we are so concerned about legislation like Sen. Durbin’s is that it is clearly intended to put us on a slippery slope toward a supplement pre-approval system—similar to the system being used by the European Union, where only those vitamins and minerals on the approved list may be used in food supplements, and only in very limited amounts. For example, if a supplement contains more beta carotene than is present in half a large carrot, it is banned. A regulatory framework like the EU’s is exactly what Sen. Durbin wants.

Sen. Rand Paul offered an admirable amendment to the same bill that would have stopped FDA censorship of health claims on dietary supplements, prohibited FDA employees from carrying firearms, and curbed FDA’s power to conduct raids on natural food stores and Amish farmers. Unfortunately the amendment was defeated 78 to 15. In addition to Sen. Paul, Senators Ayotte (NH), Boozman (AR), Coburn (OK), Cornyn (TX), Crapo (ID), DeMint (SC), Johanns (NE), Johnson (WI), Lee (UT), Risch (ID), Thune (SD), Toomey (PA), Vitter (LA), and Wicker (MS) voted for the amendment.

If you are a resident of one of these senators’ states, please send them a message, and tell them how much you appreciate their support! Take action now!

Some senators voted no because of prior commitments to the bill’s sponsor or for other reasons. Many were genuinely opposed to the ideas Sen. Paul expressed in this amendment, which we wholeheartedly endorse. In the weeks ahead, we intend to probe more deeply to find out which senators are really opposed to us. Whatever their number, we have a lot of work to do in the Senate.

Both these amendments were attached to the FDA Safety and Innovations Act (S. 3187), otherwise known as the Prescription Drug User Fee Amendments of 2012. Although its passage is certain, we do not support it. Under this bill, FDA is authorized to collect fees from the pharmaceutical industry—allegedly to fund and expedite the drug approval process, but really to pay agency expenses, including employee salaries.

This approach to funding makes FDA’s employees beholden to the very companies they are meant to oversee. In other words, it invites corruption. Not surprisingly, senators like it because they don’t have to pay agency expenses with federal money, so it’s no surprise that the bill passed, with only one senator standing in opposition: Bernie Sanders. What does it say about a legislative body that it almost unanimously passes a bill which invites government corruption?

All of this underscores how important it is to be vigilant. There will always be legislators like Sen. Durbin and Rep. Waxman who will introduce provisions that sound good to most observers at first blush, but which are intended to be stepping stones to treating supplements like drugs, as is now being done in Europe, which in turn will mean the end of most useful supplements.

We would especially like to thank Senators Orrin Hatch and Tom Harkin for the work they did in opposition to the amendment, from Senate meetings to making strong floor statements against the legislation to rallying the wider community to stand in protest. These senators deserve our gratitude and support.

94 Responses to “You Defeated the Durbin Amendment!”

  1. Judith H - TN says:

    Re: Durbin Amendment
    I contacted my senator in TN and received a response to say that they had voted against.
    So cool.

       0 likes

  2. john kutzler says:

    Hello, I just stumble on your website about the Durban legislation that was soundly defeated in-part, because of this website and the Fine people that support it. What I want to say is “Thanks to everyone” for catching this scam and doing something about it. Its Great to see democracy still works (sometimes)
    I am joining this site as a member and a Freedom First! American. Thanks Again!
    John Kutzler
    Westfield, Wi

       1 likes

  3. Gayle says:

    I want to say that I do not want to live on a planet without natural supplements.
    I am very glad that we are still able to purchase them

       4 likes

  4. Nikki says:

    I am so glad this did not pass. The people in this country have been brainwashed to think that the government and Pharmas are here to protect and help us. It couldn’t be more from the truth. People on this site realize that Pharmas don’t want to “cure” anything. They also don’t want natural herbs, etc to work either. It all comes down to the almighty dollar. My mother died from an accidental overdose of a perscription drug. I have a friend that thinks he’s fine by taking 15 different medications daily. Each one to counter the side effects of the previous one. That’s not living. All he can do is sit on the couch, I have another friend who was diagnosed with Meineres Disease. She couldn’t work due to balance issues. She was on a few medications that did not help. One doctor told her that he needed to operate and drill a hole in her head. She walked out. She went home and started doing her own research. She found a combination of natural herbs, accupuncture, etc and after five years of trial and error has now been able to take her first plane ride in years, She can sit in a car for hours without having an incident, she now walks 4 miles a day. I have watched this woman through each transition. Her amazing strength and fortitude to overcome without chemical drugs (she tossed them) and walk away from surgery to where she is now. But, you see Pharmas don’t want to hear about that because it wasn’t a drug they produced. There are a lot of wonderous natural things on this planet that Pharmas and the medical industry think are old wives tales and dangerous. Well, have you seen and heard the list of side effects from their drugs? I’m sure you have, what hypocrites.

       16 likes

    • Rich says:

      Hi Nikki,

      Could you ask your friend what combination of herbs, etc. your friend is using to relieve her symptoms?

      It would be greatly appreciated ! Thanks.

      Best Regards,

      Rich

         0 likes

  5. kay kin says:

    There are e-mails making the rounds on the net to counter public comment on our zombie gubbmint’s consistant chipping away of our free will. This result, of 90k signatures in your call to action, shows we now have our own very big stick. Spread the word! Tell everyone petitions work and are very effective to get a grip on our own lives, our own choices. Our fight or flight instincts need to be reduced to just one- fight… like you are a thick necked, 7 ft tall Amazon wearing spandex tights. Round #1 in the win zone. Make DC menagerists work for the people who voted for them, not the ones who bought’em.

       5 likes

    • Dianna M says:

      Yes! Let’s be very clear about this. Amish does not equate with kindness and sensitivity to animals.

         0 likes

    • wvhillbilly says:

      Be very sure they’ll try again. We have the best legislators money can buy, and it’s not your money or my money I’m talking about.

      Stay alert! The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.

         0 likes

  6. Mary Ellen says:

    One thing caught my eye with regards to the Paul Rand amendment regarding conducting raids on Amish farmers. I’m not sure exactly what a “raid” looks like or why that method is chosen to address this particular issue. What I do know is that at least some Amish farmers see the value of animals (other than their horses) as a commercial product and treat them in a manner that would offend most caring people. If the Paul Rand amendment was approved then something needs to be in place to protect against animal abuse.

       6 likes

  7. Mari Greer says:

    Thank YOU for all your beautiful hard work and guidance, for continually bringing such urgent and important matters to our attention, and by offering to let us help to chime in and try to make a difference for our health, safety, and well-being. You are offering an amazing and helpful service to us all. Many, many thanks to you.

       4 likes

    • ANH-USA says:

      Mari — we do not *let* you help, we need you and are so grateful for your support! Without your letters, we are just on the runway waving some glowing sticks around. YOU are the ones landing the plane!!

         5 likes

  8. Zoey says:

    It would be really hard for me to thank the majority of senators listed above. It. Would be kinda like thanking someone who regularly calls you foul names for saying “bless you” when u sneeze! maybe I could say thank u for stranding up for my rights for vit b, great job now how about u stand up for some more rights instead of denying them examples-gay rights reproductive rights, voting rights, etc. most of those senators, whether you agree with their policy’s or not are better known for what they want to deny then what they stand up for.

       3 likes

  9. Benny Tjoa says:

    I used to buy un-pasteurised RAW MILK directly from the dairy farm and always boil/cook the milk before drinking it..
    I enjoy drinking milk that way,but now the raw milk is nowhere to be found on the market.

       2 likes

  10. Allison Appleton says:

    Durbin will get to keep the bribe, sorry campaign contribution, from the pharmas he received in exchange for selling out his constituents.

       2 likes

  11. HealthForward says:

    thanks for making it easy for us to write our congressmen. Keep up the good work ANH!

       3 likes

  12. mimi harris says:

    What industry that self polices really does so?? Give me a break! I use supplements at times because the food supply is so compromised. But do I trust the industry–there seems to be no reason to do so. I’ll never forget seeing Dr. Andrew Weil (whom I like) totally freaked because something he touted and had a financial interest in turned out to be basicallly empty. Maybe you guys live in la la land. In my view, we need vigilant inspections of our food supply, our water, our medicines and our supplements. Our worship of unlimited profit and the market has compromised all of the above. Put your critical thinking caps on folks!I’m sorry the Durbin Amendment failed and hope it passes on another day.

       1 likes

    • RAM says:

      Reposted due to PC lockup problems…
      @ mimi harris You must not be a business owner. No owner really wants there customers to get sick from consuming anything they sell or get killed using their products. How does one stay in business if word gets around that your products harm the user? This whole FDA over reach is completely necessary and treats the business owners like incompetent fools. I have actively conducted “Self-Policing” for over 27 years in the aerospace industry. Do we always get everything “Right” no it is not possible to be perfect. It is safer to fly than to drive if one removes the “terrorist” threat from the equation.

      It looks like your Dr. Weil should have done his own homework although this story may be fiction, I do not have the time to research.

      “ Maybe you guys live in la la land. In my view, we need vigilant inspections of our food supply, our water, our medicines and our supplements. Our worship of unlimited profit and the market has compromised all of the above.”

      Having the GOV. inspect everything will not help anything but it will drive up the cost to unsustainable levels and give a false sense of safety. A good example is the CIA dropping the ball on the 9-11 issue when the FBI had meaningful, urgent data that needed review. The FBI had pleaded with the CIA to look at the info. The result, NOTHING was done and the rest as they say “is history”. The massive incompetence of the Gov. is everywhere. We already have the FDA controlling the food supply. Tell my why is the FDA pushing for it to be illegal for anyone to bring and use a video device at livestock farms. Not to mention the whole FDA Thymarisol issue. This amendment was attached to the FDA Safety and Innovations Act (S. 3187), otherwise known as the Prescription Drug User Fee Amendments of 2012. Under this bill, FDA is authorized to collect fees from the pharmaceutical industry—allegedly to fund and expedite the drug approval process, but really to pay agency expenses, including employee salaries.
      This approach to funding makes FDA’s employees beholden to the very companies they are meant to oversee. In other words, it invites corruption. Not surprisingly, senators like it because they don’t have to pay agency expenses with federal money, so it’s no surprise that the bill passed. What does this say about a legislative body that almost unanimously passes a bill which invites government corruption? Where is the governments’ constraint and…

         2 likes

      • DrB says:

        Thank you RAM…couldn’t have said it better myself. Mimi Harris needs to get her head out of the sand.

           0 likes

    • John says:

      Thank you for this comment, I totally agree.

      Does anyone remember Fen phen…Where was the compliance with the Good Manufacturing Practices (CGMPs) then.

      Also the CGMP requires “testing and quality control,” this has nothing to do with safety of the product…again, remember Fen Phen.

      Bottom line, there is NO oversight into these products.

         3 likes

      • ANH-USA says:

        Fen phen was an FDA-approved prescription drug, not a dietary supplement. It was pushed through the approval process due to heavy financial pressure despite strong evidence it could prove risky. Neither Fen Phen nor the problems surrounding its approval have anything to do with the CGMPs that govern supplements.

           3 likes

        • MBoyles says:

          Thanks for the FACTS. It amazes me how some people think that just because the words were said, they are absolutely true? We’ve gone mad!

             1 likes

    • gmail.comM Wilk says:

      One hundred plus years ago supplements and herbs were the only thing used for better health and they wereby far healthier than we are today, and we are so burdened with regulation after regulation (corruption and control freaks). Where does the fear mongering and over-control of our lives end – will we ultimately be nothing more than robotic slaves to the elitists (who by the way have all their freedoms in tack!)????? Stop being so manipulated into believing that government is our big daddy and momma and want only the best fron us. One of the main reasons they want to control supplements and herbs is to cash in on the profit from them plus it’s just one more way they can make us their slaves! Wake Up!

         1 likes

  13. Richard Pawley says:

    Thank God for Americans who are awake and who care. I wrote over a hundred people about this and both my progressive senators, one accepted the email. I am someone who depends on my knowledge and supplements to stay well. I’ve been to a doctor three times in the last 27 years but I really try to avoid doing that because of all the sick people who are there and I am well aware that over 100,000 Americans a year get sick just VISITING friends in the hospital. Durbin tried this stunt last year and being a progressive he lies. If this amendment passed not only would tens of thousands of Americans lose their jobs but thousands would die, because they depend on supplements that are proven to keep them well, and not the dangerous medicines and crappy genetically engineered foods that are routinely approved by the FDA no matter how many scientists say it is a bad idea. However, we need to be aware that the pharmaceutical companies will not give up on trying to take over the supplement industry and increasing prices ten fold or a hundred fold. It will only get worse when ObamaCare is in full swing. Already elderly women are being denied dialysis treatments in some states because they are over 75 all to fulfill the cuts to medicare that the president made to pay for his ObamaCare. This make me wonder when they will drop the age to 65 and then to 55 like it is in some of the countries we seem to be copying. My advice STAY ALERT, and consider building up a stockpile of things you really need like one person said here because the coming big time inflation is going to make everything skyrocket in price.

       4 likes

    • John says:

      Pleass show me some of the studies you read that are “proven to keep them well.” And by study I mean peer reviewed PCDB studies, ones not funded by the supplement company itself.

      thanks for your response in advance…

         1 likes

      • MBoyles says:

        So you mean the ones funded by the pharmaceutical companies? And the Doctors paid by them?

           0 likes

  14. Wild Bunch Reject says:

    It’s hard not to be so focused on issues of importance to us that we forget the bigger picture. I’m with the guy above who doesn’t find much in Texas Sen. Cornyn’s positions that I agree with…but this time I did, and immediately emailed thanks and encouragement to him to take similar positions. I agree that for those senators who supported Sen. Paul’s amendment, every constituent email of support helps to neutralize the lobbyist’s influence they are subject to. They know one email is equal to a dozen others who didn’t write, so let them know you think they showed leadership and that you will support them in similar situations down the road…and on to election time.

       2 likes

  15. Christa March says:

    It is time to start paying attention to what our Senators and Congress are voting for. We need to keep our options for our personal health and our US economy open. We cannot just leave our elected officials alone and hope they make choices in our best interest anymore.

       4 likes

  16. Finngal says says:

    When will this end??? Every year we have someone trying to take our own health care privileges away. To me it is the “blind leading the blind!” These congress people are dictating – not serving, and not listening. I get scared every year that I won’t have a choice as to how I want to take care of myself. Not everyone can take drugs. Who ever died from supplements? I believe I would die sooner without supplements.

    Further I think of all the fine health food stores and license herbalists who would not have work! Just what we need is more unemployment! I am not talking about the cheap stuff on the shelves in the discount stores, or even grocery stores that do no good, but good reputable health food stores and the companies that produce these fine products.

       6 likes

    • ken goldman says:

      you die hard liberals that would still vote democrat no matter what evenif they slowly strip of us all our liberties are crazy. durbin obama no difference!

         0 likes

  17. Deanna Holloway says:

    From the cradle to the grave we seem to have to fight for our rights while politicians are forever talking out of both sides of their mouths. There has never been a time in history like now when we were being told one thing and then finding out that we’ve been hoodwinked. Now is the time to watch with due diligence what our politicians are doing and who is handing money for their own agendas. I am pleased, for the most part that our Senator and Rep from Idaho are on the right side of the laws. I still feel strongly about letting them know I feel on the subjects I am passionate about. The big Pharma companies breed contempt by putting out so many chemicals that harm and kill that it’s no wonder that their name is spelled P(harm)! A Doctor once told me, “medicine is, was, and always will be in it’s experimental stages. What will cure one person many just as likely kill another.” Believe me, I’m getting pretty tired of being their “experimental dummy”! I am ever on a quest to make my life better with vitamins and minerals and I study what they can and usually do for me. I want their noses out of my business! We do not need them paying off the FDA so they can indiscriminately kill of thousands while they experiment with the citizens of this country! We need to pen letters and make phone calls to let our government workers know that we want the FDA off the payroll of the P(harm) companies! NOW!

       2 likes

  18. Albert Andrus says:

    As always, one has to question what motivates someone like Durbin to sponsor such legislation. Easy enough answer; the ones who stand to lose the most: drug companies and the mainstream medical establishment.

       1 likes

  19. RRivers says:

    Since I live in Illinois, and I have been watching Durbin in action for sometime, and I can tell you that I would be against nearly anything that Durbin supported with a good conscious. He is a way left of center, and has done nothing positive for the citizens of Illinois, I have already put him on notice that I will actively campaign against him if he attempts to run for reelection.

    I would rather we have the freedom to decide,we don’t need the federal government to babysit us. It is our responsibility to be informed, not the the governments job to take away our freedoms to “make us safer.” Ben Franklin said it best. “He who gives up freedom for safety deserves neither.”

       3 likes

    • John says:

      “we don’t need the federal government to babysit us,” says the fattest nation in the world.

         1 likes

  20. Ron says:

    I am terrified at how much power the FDA wants to exert over herbs. I am still alive only because of herbs and other alternatives, including — dare I say it? – apricot kernels. When I added the latter was when my improvement went up and over. I’d like to live in Europe for a couple of years, but guess I’ll have to stay here, where the state hasn’t taken over the basic rights of people to do whatever they can to stay or become healthy.

       1 likes

  21. B. Talbert says:

    The choke hold that the pharmaceutical industry has on the government is fostered by Congressmen and Senators who vote for such things as the Durbin amendment. The idea that the government will take care of everything and we will all be safe is just plain unrealistic. What is really going to happen is that everything will be more and more privatized and the government will have less and less responsibility to the taxpayers. This will leave more of the tax money for Congress to spend in other ways as private industry has proprietary non-disclosure and goes about their business of “shareholders first”.

       0 likes

    • D. Witt says:

      Your point about privatization does not square with the first part of your comment. If you believe there is corruption between government officials and corporate interests I tend to agreed, but that doesn’t mean we don’t need laws to protect us. These regulations are meant to provide a buffer between consumers and the free market. Privatization is the relinquishing of government control to private parties and is a separate issue. Perhaps Senator Durbin’s bill was overreaching, but the essential questions to ask are, “where do we draw the line?”, and, “when do regulations cease to be useful protection and become nothing but bureaucratic meddling?”. I have no “one size fits all” answer to these questions.

         0 likes

      • ANH-USA says:

        “when do regulations cease to be useful protection and become nothing but bureaucratic meddling?”
        An answer to this might be: When the regulations cannot reasonably be expected to improve any metric of consumer safety and can be reasonably expected to hurt consumer access. Durbin’s amendment, which gave supplement companies just 30 days to submit massive quantities of paperwork to keep existing products on the market, could not reasonably be expected to improve any metric of safety, since the vast majority of these thousands of products have not received any complaints or other indications there is a safety problem, and could be reasonably expected to hurt consumer access, since the 30-day window was far too short a timeframe to submit paperwork on the tens of thousands of products involved which would have resulted in companies being forced to pull all their products until they could finish submitting paperwork. When there is no threat detectable, taking away tens of thousands of items that many people rely on daily for their health does far more damage than allowing them to stay on the market.

           0 likes

  22. Bob says:

    I too would like some answes from Sens Boxer and Feinstein.

       0 likes

  23. AnneOnymous says:

    Not only must we keep our eyes on this creep who keeps trying to slip controversial bills that aren’t in the slightest any good for the people, but we must ensure that the g’ment doesn’t find a way to stifle the internet and specifically our (and others) quick response to bills and amendments that the criminal element in politics keep trying to feed us. Myself, if I have to use snail mail I’ll do it in order to stifle these idiots. I just wish we could vote these crooks out as easily, oh well.. When their time does come (next election) don’t fall for their temporary attempts at helping the voter, look at their past.. Know a snake does not change colors and vote these vermin out of our lives.

       2 likes

    • coalmine canary says:

      To get the crooks out of office, we need to recruit newbies to run for public office and challenge Congressional seats. Even just to divert votes is helpful. There are organizations devoted to nothing but this cause. I have not followed them and don’t know if they are still active, but last I heard about Clean Sweep and others that were involved. Moveon.org offered to help pay for those running for public office ,a good thing to do. They are doubtlessly also infiltrated and it may be a coin toss which way the results go, I don’t know. I do commend them though for trying in this area, and want to suggest that there is hope.

         0 likes

  24. Randie Walton says:

    So Happy to have Defeated Durbin’s sneaky attempt to take away our Supplements. They do Not Care about the Public. Its GREED and all they care about is Charging Me through Doctors and Pharmacies for the supplements that keep me feeling well. A prescription for Vitamin D, and all the rest? Pick up my Supplements from a Pharmacist who are Clueless? Crazy.
    Glad we defeated him and we will never back down

       1 likes

  25. Stan Paul says:

    It is sad how many people want to give their freedom to the big pharmas. Mother nature has given us everything we need to take care of ourselves. Always fight and question. If not there will be no accountability. I bet Sen. Durbin and many more get their contributions from these big dogs. Remember, they are few and we are many. But many of us are asleep. That is the problem.

       82 likes

  26. Kim says:

    I didn’t support your efforts. I wanted Sen. Durbin’s amendment to pass.

       10 likes

    • Melody says:

      Why, so people like me would be hard pressed to get nutrients we couldn’t get otherwise? Really smart, Kim. Thanks for being so supportive of your fellow human beings. /end sarcasm

         2 likes

    • zack says:

      That’s too bad. I’m glad that durbin will get beat this fall.

         2 likes

    • AnneOnymous says:

      You must not care about people like Brian who’ 70, lives on S.S. and can’t buy those over-inflated pricey drugs.. The old Ebeneezer would be proud of you.

         2 likes

    • Jack Dale says:

      Why was that? Have YOU been “harmed” by vitamins? It’s important to NOT let any regulatory agency be “co-opted” by Big Pharma, because my Father was a PhD within big-Pharma, and he knew regulations can kill, but other regulations can STILL leave populations vunerable. Right now, many of the government arms/bureaus are in the hands of Big Pharma. How does that advance health for you & yours? Advancing ANYTHING the Globalists desire is a BIG mistake, because it may only help the Globalists or the huge multi-nationals, many of them off-shore. Imo, Durbin is a terrible legislator. We should email against HR 5651, PLUS, the U.N. should not have ANY control of our internet, or sites like this one will disappear.

         2 likes

    • chris says:

      I would love to know why you or anybody believes they have a right to voice any opinion or control what supplements other people take. If I want to take extra vitamin C or Serrapeptase or anything else why should government have any say so? At least people don’t die from supplements, even the worst quality ones (centrum ect…)

         2 likes

    • Mark says:

      Let’s put the FDA in charge of supplements. They do such a good job overseeing the Big Pharmaceuticals. Last year more people died from prescription medications than died in auto accidents. Perhaps the FDA should concentrate on fixing that problem and stay out of the supplement business.

         4 likes

    • Ron says:

      WHY!!

         1 likes

    • JACK says:

      Your desire to have Sen. Durbins bill to be passed is ludicrous, I will agree that some supplements are not effective if they don’t have the most effective type of vitamin strength and potentcy. You just cannot go and buy vitamins at a super market and expect results. For instance Coconut Oil by itself is not effective because it’s not absorbable without some fat, but if you add Red Whale Krill Oil to Coconut Oil it is a very valuble supplement, and it has been very good for Alzheimer patients, in fact it has borught people back to where they can function and remember who their loved ones are, that is a great break through, but the big drug lobbyists want all supplements banned, it’s all political. I wouldn’t trust Sen. Durbin as far as I could throw him,
      I wonder how much the big drug companies are paying him. I don’t know who you are but why would you want some great supplements banned so Durbin can get some payola? .

         3 likes

    • davea0511 says:

      Then you didn’t understand that the bill would have done absolutely nothing to curb the tragedies Durbin used in his rhetoric. A 3rd grader could have listened to his justifications and noticed that they were totally disconnected to what the bill actually did. His gross misrepresentation of what the bill would have accomplished should have been your first warning sign. In short his case was built upon deception, and why do you suppose that was the case?

         2 likes

    • DrB says:

      May I ask why you support Durbin’s amendment?

         1 likes

    • Michele says:

      I respect your opinion. I would just like you to elaborate why you wanted the Durbin amendment to pass. Is it the testing? Do you think supplements should be regulated like drugs? The latter would dramatically change the landscape for an industry not currently under the control of big business pharm companies, insurance and western medicine. The spirit of the amendment in my opinion is not for the welfare of human beings but instead is all about putting more economic power in the hands of a few. Supplement sales are proven profitable enough to attract the attention of big business to overtake it, not in the sense of fair trade and competition but in the sense of legislation manipulating the market.

         3 likes

    • london2z says:

      Do you want people to be unhealthy, and die long, slow deaths in hospital beds?

         2 likes

    • Sherry says:

      Kim you are uneducated about what is going on. There is nothing good about this Durbin bill. Learn what is really going on before you make comments.

         2 likes

    • Dusty says:

      So I wonder then?? What brings you to this site/discussion. Where do you stand on holistic health; supplements to encourage balanced health, and taking personal responsibilty for your own health? I DIDN’T want it to pass because I want to maintain my per4sonal right to chose what I believe is right for my body personally; I spend long hours of research on prosducts I use and do my best to be fully informed. I WILL NOT give my personal power over to a physician and accept a magic pill to heal myself. I do use western medicine where they are needed; Surgery, Broken bones, diagnostics and several other areas; but I maintain my right to chose “what’s best for me” physically,mentally,emotionally and spiritually.

      Just wondering where you are at and why you chose to visit this site??

         2 likes

    • Robin says:

      Why? You just like big pharma and big government cronie-politicians running your business?

         2 likes

    • jean says:

      Obviously Kim has never had to fight for her daughter’s life using supplements to undo medical damage from big Pharm and Doctor’s damage to her.
      Uninformed people can cause terrible damage to our freedom’s.

         2 likes

    • Gary says:

      Why in the world would any intelligent and informed person want it to pass?! Makes no sense.

         2 likes

    • Fred says:

      Why did you want Sen Durbin’s amendment to pass?

         1 likes

    • greenchili says:

      I am currently on Dr. Joseph Mercola’s three month autoship program for his Whole Food Multivitamin PLUS. I had sent Dr. Mercola an email informing him that I would boycott the state of Illinois IF Senator Durbin’s bill passed. Dr. Mercola’s business is in the state of Illinois. I’m proud to state that I also boycotted Oprah’s show after she supported a political candidate for the POTUS in 2008. That boycott was successful in reducing her viewership after President Obama was elected. I’m sure MANY people who buy supplements would follow my lead IF Senator Durbin’s bill had passed. As a matter of fact, i’m considering NOT doing any NEW business with any business that resides in the state of Illinois (other than Dr. Mercola). It is time for Illinois to feel the pain of electing Senator Durbin who also BANNED my access to Andro.

         2 likes

    • Ariane says:

      and your reasoning is… ??? you want your right to natural health controlled by the Big Pharm companies – yikes!

         2 likes

    • Peter Cloutier says:

      Dear Kim: thanks for your comment but, like any vote, it doesn’t give your reason. Please tell us why you were in favor of the amendment.

         1 likes

    • PAUX says:

      Why? You must have a reason for your stance. Big pharma is also with you in this matter, they would like to have the products that we are able to procure over the table now to be obtained by prescription, whereas they will profit. I think the public is able to make supplement decisions without interference by government on behalf of big pharma.

         2 likes

    • Cheryl Liniman says:

      Apparently you want to quickly give up your freedom of choice. Many people can’t take heart and cholesterol medications because of the horrendous side effects. Krill oil and other things are just as beneficial without the harm and side effects. Instead of prescription medications, my two grandchildren (one with Autism) take Melatonin at night in order to go to sleep peacefully and get a good rest. Recommended by their Pediatrician and a NATURAL supplement. Works wonders and even helps some kids with ADHD.

      Uninformed people like yourself would END our freedom to treat our own bodies in a more natural way. People like YOU would DO HARM to people by FORCING dangerous prescription drugs down our throats.

         2 likes

    • Deb says:

      Really…so we loose even more rights! How often do you hear of supplements injuring someone? And how often do we hear of pharmaceutical drugs injuring or killing people? I rest my case. I have personally seen supplements and herbs help so many people that it’s hard for me to imagine that anyone would say what you are saying, unless you have stock in a drug company. Why not let us have the freedom to choose?

         2 likes

    • Sandy says:

      Please tell me why you support further government interference in our lives? Also, tell me why you believe that making criminals out of people that are trying to provide the public wiht quality supplements is a good thing. This bill would have also put a lot of peoples livelihoods in jeopardy and ran many out of business. In an already strained economy, why do you support this?

         2 likes

    • Keith says:

      Kim,
      Can you please explain to us why you do not support the effort to curb this legislation?

         2 likes

    • Nikki says:

      So, if you don’t agree with this website, why are you here posting?

         2 likes

  27. D. says:

    HR 5651 is introducing an almost identical bill to the House as what was proposed in S. 3187 on the Senate floor – so that means the House is already taking another run at that Senate Bill (likely with some far-reaching changes). So far the true meaning seems to be mired in legalese incomprehensible to most of us, but as time passes it will become apparent. But I won’t look for anything good to come out of it. Rushing drugs and equipment into use already seems to be causing difficulty and now they want to speed up the process even further?? How can that be a good thing by anyone’s reasoning – even a politico?

    On a different note, however, I refuse to write and thank my Senator for voting against tabling Amendment 2137, when with those same hands he upheld S. 3187 by voting in the affirmative. It doesn’t make good sense.

       4 likes

    • davea0511 says:

      You have a good point, but thank you notes even when undeserved send an important message … the only kind of message politicians can hear – messages that appeal to their vanity. They’re only tools. Use them to your best advantage, and leave your pride at the doorstep.

         0 likes

    • D. Witt says:

      The problem you are referring to probably has little to do with the speed at which drugs go through the approval process. The FDA’s processes are time-consuming, complex, and extremely expensive, but what I’ve seen for over a decade seems to be a lack of critical decision-making, or perhaps just bureaucratic bungling. The process of getting a drug to market has become a juggernaut, and so it’s inevitable that mistakes are made. But there’s also the fact that there is an essential unpredictability when designing something as complex as these drugs to ensure reasonable compatibility with something as complex as the human body. The science of this is far from optimal.

         0 likes

  28. Brian says:

    How very heartening. At 70 years old, I get nervous about threats to the supplements I depend on to keep going. Prompted me to email my representatives.

       21 likes

    • Me too — Now 70 and do rely on supplements. I’ve read every written thing on ‘alternative’ healing. Have a lot of information and inner complete conviction about the vitamins and mineral etc that have changed my health for the better. It is fearsome to see the power of the ones who jealously stalk what believers such as me, you, the Alliance et al, do. There is threat written all over the BigPharma giant. their rules about use of words in the advertising alone shows us how monolithic these guys are … I get fearfilled.

         1 likes

  29. Lisa M. says:

    Thank God. I’ve already ordered several years’ worth of all the supplements I take because of the disastrous FDA guidance and was considering ordering even more when I read about the Durbin amendment. I was one of the 90,000 who responded by email to the action alert but I also called both of my senators since time was of the essence. I’m heartened to read that one of my senators, Sen. Cornyn, was one of the 15 senators who voted in favor of Rand Paul’s amendment to attempt to curb FDA abuses. I don’t agree with Senator Cornyn on much, but I called his office that day and am going to send him a thank-you email right now.

       13 likes

  30. coalmine canary says:

    I want answers from Diane Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, specifically why they did not support Rand Paul’s amendment to the Durbin bill.

    Our government senators and representatives are elected to serve, not to “be leaders”. to call them “leaders” and treat them as such, is our common American mistake. We must, instead, remind them that we pay them to uphold the will of the general populace, and to protect, defend and uphold the US Constitution, according to their oath of office.

    We must never ask Reps and Senators what their position is about a given bill. Instead, we need to inform them of our own, and ask that they uphold the will of the constituents who they are (at least, in theory) elected to serve.

       56 likes

    • Mack531 says:

      (@ Coal Mine Canary 5:42PM)– Well said. My sentiments exactly.

         1 likes

    • Mike D says:

      Diane Feinstein and Barbara Boxer are radical left wing pieces of filth that do not believe in freedom, liberty, or free enterprise. Feinstein is the poster child for why we need term limits.

         1 likes

    • Ellen Albrecht says:

      Bravo. I couldn’t say it better.

         2 likes

    • Robin says:

      I too am in CA and will be contacting the offices of Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer to ask them that question as well. Senators need to hear from us, whether they voted for the amendment (thank them) or didn’t (ask why).

         1 likes

    • Cheryl says:

      Agreed, and well said!

         0 likes

    • Peter Cloutier says:

      Dear Coalmine:
      Thanks for your comment. I concur with you that our elected representatives are exactly that: elected by us and represent us. But, you know that’s not how it really works for many of them, right? Please read “Republic, Lost” by Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig who describes in great detail the insidious nature of the pressure that current campaign finance rules and practices place on our reps as well as the strong motivation that these reps have in getting re-elected.
      While it is comforting to reaffirm the theory behind our representative system, it might be more effective for all Americans to realize that our system virtually requires our reps to corrupt themselves to keep the jobs they so badly want to keep. They are not going to fix the system because it works for them and because human nature is such that they don’t truly think that they are corrupted in any meaningful sense even if they are. No, it is the American public that needs to mobilize to demand a completely new system of campaign finance so that big monied interests have much less influence. And, we have to demand devastatingly severe penalties for any representative that succumbs to other forms of corruption.
      Please, please realize that until the systemic corruption of our reps is fixed, no significant improvements in America’s situation is likely to occur. It is the number one cancer that has caused our country to become diseased. Only a nation-wide grass-roots effort will cause any real change.

         1 likes

    • coalmine canary says:

      Dear friends:

      I want to thank you all. It is so heartening to know that people care.

      As for requiring corruption to stay in office, you better believe it. i am very keenly aware, painfully aware.

      I would suggest that for EVERY American to check the Congressional voting record before voting for Anybody—and I don’t care what they say and how their mouth talks (”Change” may have been exactly the kind of “Change” we never wanted, and other things offered ny President Un-Elects and -Elects on all sides of the aisle, all stripes and colors, ditto)……

      If we check the Congressional voting record before going to the polls, instead of relying on some self-salesman’s mouth, we will have a different America.

      Yes I know that votes are rigged, but they can only tweak the statistics so far before we all become suspicious….they have to be somewhat close to the also-rigged polls……as advertized…..

      Repeat: If we all vote based on the voting record, America will be different. I saw Barbara Boxer’s vote for the Patriot Act repeatedly, and never trusted her supposedly liberal mouth again. A mouth is all that it is….Feinstein, part of the military industrial complex, with her husband as part-owner…this is an act of mass murder….need more be said?

      Thanks everybody. I am very aware, and ask that you help too. Please spread word asking people to vote based on voting records. FYI I knew Obama would betray us too ,based on his vote for the Patriot Act, repeatedly. I never fell for the Obama craze, because of this. What would happen if all of America checked out the facts first?

         1 likes

      • D. Witt says:

        That’s a very good question. My guess, and it’s only a guess, is that everyone would be so outraged and disgusted that no one would vote, assuming that we could realistically learn ALL the facts.

           0 likes

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