Michael Halpern

Deputy director, Center for Science & Democracy

Author image
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.

Subscribe to Michael's posts

Michael's Latest Posts

Department of Interior Buries Communications Policy After Attempting to Justify Muzzling Scientists

Yesterday, the Los Angeles Times broke the story about the new policy at the U.S. Geological Survey requiring scientists to get permission before speaking to reporters about science. In an attempt to justify the muzzling, a department spokesperson said they were just following an Obama-era communications policy (sound familiar?). After reporters linked to the policy, it was removed from its previous location and buried deep in the DOI website. You can find it there as a Word document; I’ve made a PDF available hereRead more >

Bookmark and Share

EPA Extends Comment Deadline, Schedules Hearing on Science Proposal After Pretty Much Everyone Complains

The EPA today extended the comment deadline to August 16 on its proposal to restrict the types of science that can be used in EPA decisions after pretty much everyone—from the American Home Builders Association to the American Geophysical Union—complained that a thirty-day comment period was grossly insufficient for a rule with such potential wide-ranging consequences. The EPA also scheduled a public hearing to be held in Washington, DC on July 17. Read more >

Bookmark and Share

Photo: US Air Force/Senior Airman Julianne Showalter

Bipartisan Outrage as EPA, White House Try to Cover Up Chemical Health Assessment

Citing a potential “public relations nightmare,” the Trump administration successfully stopped the publication of a study measuring the health effects of a group of hazardous chemicals found in drinking water and household products throughout the United States. Many of the contaminated sites are on military bases across the country and affect military families directly. Multiple Republicans and Democrats have expressed concern about the censorship and have called for the report to be released, and Trump administration officials are scrambling to contain the political fallout.  Read more >

CSPAN
Bookmark and Share

Empty courtroom

Among President Trump’s Dismal Judicial Nominees, Wendy Vitter Stands Out for Promoting Unscientific Myths

Wendy Vitter has been nominated by President Trump for a lifetime appointment to the U.S. District Court in Louisiana, and is expected to receive a vote in a Senate committee tomorrow. Vitter has a track record of promoting anti-science myths which call into question her capacity to impartially evaluate evidence and expert testimony as a future judge. Senators should think long and hard if they want someone with this kind of judgement on the bench. Read more >

Bookmark and Share

A List of Scientific Organizations That Have Supported and Opposed Limiting What Research EPA Can Use to Make Decisions

The EPA today will announce a politically-motivated draft policy to restrict the use of science in agency decisions. The draft policy is based on legislation that has died in Congress for several years. Read more >

Bookmark and Share