Vermont U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy was the keynote speaker today at the Northeast Regional IDeA Conference. More than 300 biomedical researchers from Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Delaware and Vermont are in Burlington for the National Institutes of Health-sponsored meeting. Senator Leahy says cuts proposed in President Trump’s budget are extremely dangerous to researchers.
"I think the budget proposals are devastating to medical research. What they’re saying is ‘here we’ll make huge cuts here and maybe in a few years we’ll put it back.’ They’re cutting some of it back to a level of what it was almost 20 years ago. But you can’t turn medical research on and off. You can’t say well we’ll set it aside for two or three years but then bring the researchers back and start up again. We never would have had a vaccination against polio if we had done that."
Vermont Democrat Patrick Leahy, the Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, ranks first in seniority in the U.S. Senate.