Michael Halpern

Deputy director, Center for Science & Democracy

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Michael Halpern is an expert on political interference in science and solutions to reduce suppression, manipulation, and distortion of government science. See Michael's full bio.

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White House Removes Public Health Experts from Coronavirus Discussions

This is President Trump’s approach to nearly every public health and environmental threat: find some way to exclude the experts, stop them from speaking publicly, and make decisions in a vacuum. The deliberate sidelining of public health experts and science leads to bad policy, and ultimately, to more sickness and death. Read more >

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EPA Moves to Handcuff Its Scientists

EPA political leaders want the option to force agency scientific experts to ignore some of the best evidence we have about how pollution makes people sick. Read more >

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Training on the use of personal protective equipment. Photo: cdc.gov

Coronavirus and the Terrifying Muzzling of Public Health Experts

The administration is muzzling government scientists, requiring that all statements be politically vetted through Vice President Pence, and punishing federal employees who draw attention to gross negligence. This is a highly dangerous power grab that undermines both emergency response and public faith in the reliability of information coming out of the government. And it speaks to the incompetence and incoherence of the response to this crisis so far. Read more >

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Court Rebukes EPA’s Ban on Independent Science Advisors

A court this week found serious flaws in the EPA’s exclusion from its advisory committees of academic and non-profit scientists holding grants from the agency. After permitting these eminent scientists to serve (for free!) for decades, the EPA abruptly reversed course in 2017. The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York explained that the “EPA was required to provide a ‘reasoned explanation’ for its decision to ‘disregard[] facts and circumstances that underlay or were engendered by the prior policy,” but that the “EPA has failed to do so.” Read more >

Ken Lund/CC BY-SA 2.0 (Flickr)
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Photo: Mike Olliver

Take the Science Rising Challenge to Build Voter Power

Participation in the Science Rising Challenge will give you so much more than an “I Voted” sticker. Read more >

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