This Has Got to Be the Strangest Impact of the Sequester

National Journal
Brian Resnick
Add to Briefcase
See more stories about...
Brian Resnick
Aug. 19, 2013, 11:34 a.m.

The se­quester has now killed bun­nies. Yes, furry, in­no­cent, blind, lab-test bun­nies have been put to sleep be­cause of a $1.7 bil­lion cut in the budget for the Na­tion­al In­sti­tutes of Health. A re­search oph­thal­mo­lo­gist writ­ing to the Huff­ing­ton Post in re­sponse to a story about sci­ence cuts says Con­gress is the reas­on why he killed the bun­nies he pet­ted, played with, and ex­per­i­mented on. (Via Grist)

I have riffed one postdoc­tor­al fel­low and eu­th­an­ized many beau­ti­ful, rare, and ex­pens­ive trans­gen­ic rab­bits that were new, ex­cit­ing mod­els for test­ing new ther­apies for hu­man ret­in­al de­gen­er­a­tions. We pet­ted them, played with them, fed them treats. Now they are dead. I blame Con­gress dir­ectly for that.

The bun­nies are in­deed a sad loss. But per­haps more il­lus­trat­ive is how the re­search­er de­scribes how the fund­ing cuts forced him to end his pro­ject early, thus wast­ing a lot of money that had already been spent.

Moreover the se­quester’s cost is tre­mend­ously un­der­stated as no one is count­ing the des­troyed in­vest­ments. I’ve spent over $25,000 de­vel­op­ing a colony of an­im­als who have a pro­gress­ive age-de­pend­ent blind­ness. Be­cause of the se­quester we’ve killed them be­fore we could fin­ish the treat­ment study. We saved about $4,000 from this year’s budget. We thus wasted 5x more money than the se­quester saved. When and if Con­gress ever does any­thing again, it will be years be­fore we get our new blind­ness-treat­ment study back on line. If it doesn’t get bet­ter soon, I’ll re­tire early and then 15 people will be un­em­ployed.

What We're Following See More »
“CHAIR WITH ONLY ONE FULL TIME COMMITMENT”
Rep. Ellison Confirms He Will Quit Congress If Elected DNC Chair
7 minutes ago
THE LATEST

Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison is currently the favorite to become the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee, and he has confirmed that if he is elected come February, he will resign his seat in Congress. In a statement from Ellison this morning, he says that the Democratic Party needs "a chair with only one full time commitment."

TO BE ANNOUNCED IN COMING DAYS
Trump To Nominate Gen. John Kelly For Homeland Security
44 minutes ago
THE LATEST

Donald Trump has chosen Gen. James Kelly to be his secretary of homeland security, making Kelly the third general tapped by Trump to serve in his administration. The official announcement is likely to come in the next couple of days. Kelly, who did not endorse Trump during the campaign, "was the commander of U.S. Southern Command until earlier this year."

Source:
2018 WATCH
Iowa Gov. Branstad Nominated For Ambassador To China
1 hours ago
THE DETAILS

Iowa Republican Terry Branstad, the longest-serving governor in American history, has accepted President-elect Donald Trump's offer to serve as ambassador to China, Bloomberg reported late Tuesday. Branstad has a longstanding relationship with Chinese President Xi Jinping and backed Trump during the election. If he's confirmed, Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds would become the Hawkeye State's first female governor and could run for a full term in 2018. Iowa does not place term limits on its governors.

NO SURPRISE HERE
Trump Is TIME’s Person of the Year
1 hours ago
THE DETAILS
INCLUDES WAIVER FOR MATTIS
Congress Releases Stopgap Funding Bill
3 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"Congressional negotiators released a stopgap spending bill Tuesday night to avert a partial government shutdown at midnight Friday and to fund federal agencies and programs through April 28." The 70-page continuing resolution includes $170 million to aid Flint, Michigan's water supply, and a waiver that would allow Ret. Gen. James Mattis to assume the role of secretary of Defense.

Source:
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login