Big Pharma Lobbyists Put Words Into Reps' Mouths
We 'didn't know' where the language came from, reps plead
By Jen Paton,  Newser User
Posted Nov 15, 2009 8:37 AM CST
Rep. Joe Wilson noted in a statement drafted by Genentech that "the US biotechnology industry... has been an engine of job creation in this country."   (AP Photo/Harry Hamburg,File)
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(Newser) – Yep, that's an echo you hear in the House chamber. The New York Times has obtained emails showing that language drafted by lobbyists working for biotech giant Genentech made it almost unchanged into statements and speeches made on health care—by Democrats and Republicans alike. A Genentech lawyer told staffers, “We are trying to secure as many House R’s and D’s to offer this/these statements for the record as humanly possible.” Mission accomplished: 42 representatives picked up language drafted by the firm.

One rep noted he received the language from his staff and “did not know where they got the information from.” The ghostwritten language focused on job creation within the US biotech industry. The similarities are striking. One Democrat stated, “I see this bill as an exciting opportunity to create the kind of jobs we so desperately need in this country, while at the same time improving the lives of all Americans.” A second representative made the same statement, editing the ending slightly to "ALL Americans." It's probably not quite what the founding fathers meant by E Pluribus Unim.