House Majority Leader Eric Cantor is setting aside the need to cut government spending for now and is instead suggesting shuffling some funds around. Specifically, Cantor suggested Tuesday that the $100 million taxpayers spend on publicly funded presidential campaigns and conventions should be diverted to fund research to fight autism and other childhood diseases.
"Instead of spending millions of taxpayer dollars for presidential campaigns, these funds will be better spent helping find cures and treatments for pediatric diseases and disorders like autism," Cantor said in a press conference with Reps. Gregg Harper and Tom Cole. To accomplish this, Cantor plans to introduce the "Kids First Research Act" to increase funding for pediatric research at the National Institutes of Health.
Could this be something Republicans and Democrats and come together to agree on?
The Washington Examiner's Paul Bedard has more details:
Spending money on researching autism has been increasing, but the trio's plan would provide a funding turbo boost by diverting about $100 million over 10 years from the presidential election fund to pediatric research.
"In order for clinical trials - and other advancements - to meet their full potential, adequate federal resources must be directed to pediatric research," said Harper.
Cole, a recent chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee, said picking on funds for presidential campaigns and national presidential conventions was easy. "Transforming welfare for politicians into efforts to eradicate this terrible disease is a much better reflection of our national prerogatives," said Cole. "This legislation is an example of how much can be accomplished by ending wasteful spending and redirecting those funds toward urgent national priorities like the need to combat autism."