August 2018 media hits

Public Citizen is mentioned, or its experts quoted, every day in print and broadcast media around the world. Below are links to some of the recent stories in which we have appeared.

As Trump Obscures Anti-Worker Record Ahead of Labor Day, New Report Details His Actual Worker Agenda: 'Drop Dead'

9/1/2018
CommonDreams: As Trump Obscures Anti-Worker Record Ahead of Labor Day, New Report Details His Actual Worker Agenda: 'Drop Dead' by Jake Johnson - "Trump has betrayed America's workforce, sacrificing lives at the altar of industry profits," Shanna Devine, worker health and safety advocate for Public Citizen's Congress Watch division and author of the new report, said in a statement.

TRUMP’S FTC RELEASES NEARLY 500 PAGES OF MATERIAL ON CONFLICTS OF INTEREST — AND REDACTS IT ALL

8/31/2018
The Intercept_: TRUMP’S FTC RELEASES NEARLY 500 PAGES OF MATERIAL ON CONFLICTS OF INTEREST — AND REDACTS IT ALL by David Dayen - Smith’s financial disclosure form, obtained by Public Citizen, lists his work on behalf of big banks, payday lenders, pawn shops, credit reporting companies, pharmaceutical firms, and perhaps worst of all, the Dallas Cowboys.

Febuxostat shows renoprotective effect; cardioprotection unclear

8/31/2018
Healio: Febuxostat shows renoprotective effect; cardioprotection unclear by Staff - In June, Public Citizen, a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization, petitioned the FDA to remove febuxostat due to what it called “unique, serious – some fatal” CV risks, as reported by Healio.com.

The Devil’s in the Details: NAFTA Puts Trump in a Political Pickle

8/31/2018
Truthout: The Devil’s in the Details: NAFTA Puts Trump in a Political Pickle by Mike Ludwig - Lori Wallach, the director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, has tracked ISDS cases for years. She told Truthout the preliminary agreement would end ISDS in the US and Canada

CMS TO ALLOW INDICATION-BASED FORMULARY DESIGN IN MEDICARE

8/30/2018
Medpage Today: CMS TO ALLOW INDICATION-BASED FORMULARY DESIGN IN MEDICARE by Shannon Firth - Steve Knievel, the access to medicines advocate for the consumer advocacy group Public Citizen, said he expected only "a mild impact" on drug prices.

Intellectual Property Provision In U.S.-Mexico Trade Deal Sets Off Alarms For Generics Companies, Consumer Groups

8/30/2018
Kaiser Health News: Intellectual Property Provision In U.S.-Mexico Trade Deal Sets Off Alarms For Generics Companies, Consumer Groups by Staff - “The U.S. government is working in favor of the pharma lobby and against health,” said Peter Maybarduk, who heads the access to medicines campaign for Public Citizen. In other pharmaceutical news: Pfizer's problems at its manufacturing plant, digital pills, recalls and more.

Susan Collins says that GOP bill to safeguard pre-existing condition protections doesn’t go far enough

8/29/2018
Washington Examiner: Susan Collins says that GOP bill to safeguard pre-existing condition protections doesn’t go far enough by Philip Klein - The advocacy group Public Citizen called for the closure of an ongoing NIH-funded trial examining new treatments for sepsis.

Not so fast, eh: The real deal on that U.S.-Mexico trade agreement

8/29/2018
ThinkProgress: Not so fast, eh: The real deal on that U.S.-Mexico trade agreement by D. Parvaz - “We know progress was made…but we also know that the enforceability of the new labor and environmental standards to which the U.S. and Mexico agreed is still lacking — that’s a very big problem that needs to be resolved,” said Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch.

Watchdog group urges halt of ‘reckless’ clinical trial on patients at 3 NC hospitals

8/29/2018
The Charlotte Observer: Watchdog group urges halt of ‘reckless’ clinical trial on patients at 3 NC hospitals by John Murawski - Public Citizen warned in a letter to federal regulators Tuesday that the clinical trial lacks basic patient safeguards and could expose up to 2,320 patients to organ failure and death.

Brett Kavanaugh Sure Does Love Giant Corporations

8/29/2018
Mother Jones: Brett Kavanaugh Sure Does Love Giant Corporations by Kevin Drum - Public Citizen found that in many of the most contentious ones, Kavanaugh has frequently argued in favor of deferring to federal regulatory agencies—but only when they’re ruling in favor of big corporations.

Talks with Canadian officials expected after US-Mexico deal

8/29/2018
AP: Talks with Canadian officials expected after US-Mexico deal by Paul Wiseman - But other analysts said the answer wasn't clear: "It's a question that has never been tested," said Lori Wallach, director of the left-leaning Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch.

An Advocacy Group Is Trying To Stop A Nationwide Sepsis Study That Involves The University Of Kentucky

8/29/2018
WFPL: An Advocacy Group Is Trying To Stop A Nationwide Sepsis Study That Involves The University Of Kentucky by Lisa Gillespie - The nonprofit group Public Citizen sent a letter Tuesday to the federal Office for Human Research Protections, raising concerns about a trial to measure two treatments for sepsis, the tenth leading cause of death in Kentucky.

Solar panel leasing deals on LI plagued by consumer complaints

8/29/2018
NewsDay: Solar panel leasing deals on LI plagued by consumer complaints by Thomas Maier and Mark Harrington - "No question the number of complaints and legal cases against solar leasing is contributing to this drop-off” in installations both nationally and in New York, said Tyson Slocum, an energy expert with Public Citizen, a Washington-based watchdog group. “It’s part of the larger factors that are making solar leasing not as attractive financially as it was a few years ago.”

Study: Brett Kavanaugh Inevitably Rules for Whoever Is More Powerful

8/29/2018
Mother Jones: Study: Brett Kavanaugh Inevitably Rules for Whoever Is More Powerful by Stephanie Mencimer - But a new study out from the consumer group Public Citizen found that in his decisions from the bench, Kavanaugh’s distaste for the work of federal agencies like the EPA or the FCC on regulatory issues has not been so consistent.

Trump donor buys California power plant, asks feds to change energy market

8/29/2018
San Francisco Chronicle: Trump donor buys California power plant, asks feds to change energy market by David Baker - Tyson Slocum, director of the energy program at the Public Citizen advocacy group, said similar markets elsewhere have yielded higher costs for consumers, not lower.

Public Citizen: Trump Administration's Fuel Economy Proposal Hides Pollution Deaths

8/29/2018
Forbes: Public Citizen: Trump Administration's Fuel Economy Proposal Hides Pollution Deaths by Sebastian Blanco - But Public Citizen noticed something else strange about the Trump Administration's proposal for dirtier cars, something that actually minimizes the number of potential fatalities due to the fuel economy roll back.

Watchdog Group Warns Of "Reckless" Clinical Trial At North Carolina Hospitals

8/29/2018
WFDD: Watchdog Group Warns Of "Reckless" Clinical Trial At North Carolina Hospitals by Neal Charnoff - The News and Observer reports that the group Public Citizen sent a letter to federal regulators calling the trial unethical and reckless. The Washington, D.C.-based group says the trial lacks basic patient safeguards, and could expose up to 2,320 participants to organ failure and death.

White House nears trade deal with Mexico

8/28/2018
Lewiston Tribune: White House nears trade deal with Mexico by William Spence - But other analysts said the answer wasn’t clear: “It’s a question that has never been tested,” said Lori Wallach, director of the left-leaning Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch.

Controversial sepsis study sparks concerns over patient safety

8/28/2018
Becker's Hospital Review: Controversial sepsis study sparks concerns over patient safety by Harrison Cook - The nonprofit consumer advocacy organization Public Citizen urged federal health officials to stop a nationwide sepsis study in an Aug. 28 letter to the National Institutes of Health, arguing the research could put patients' health at risk and produce murky results.

Clinical trial on sepsis conducted around the country, including Cleveland Clinic, draws criticism

8/28/2018
News 5 Cleveland: Clinical trial on sepsis conducted around the country, including Cleveland Clinic, draws criticism by Kaylyn Hlavaty - The group, Public Citizen, said the trial involving treatment for sepsis is deeply flawed and unethical.

Preliminary US-Mexico trade deal leaves trail of uncertainty

8/28/2018
Las Cruces Sun News: Preliminary US-Mexico trade deal leaves trail of uncertainty by Paul Wiseman - But other analysts said the answer wasn't clear: "It's a question that has never been tested," said Lori Wallach, director of the left-leaning Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch.

Is an ongoing national sepsis study putting patients at risk?

8/28/2018
Health Exec: Is an ongoing national sepsis study putting patients at risk? by Amy Baxter - In the study, patients with sepsis—an extreme reaction to infection that kills more than 250,000 Americans every year—are taking one of two treatments for the condition that are not considered standard, Public Citizen stated.

Critics Trying To Stop A Big Study Of Sepsis Say The Research Puts Patients At Risk

8/28/2018
NPR: Critics Trying To Stop A Big Study Of Sepsis Say The Research Puts Patients At Risk by Richard Harris - "The problem is, both of those experimental ways for treating sepsis may do worse," says Dr. Michael Carome, head of the Public Citizen Health Research Group, which has lodged a complaint with federal health officials.

Watchdog group calls for NIH to halt ‘dangerous’ study of sepsis treatment

8/28/2018
Stat: Watchdog group calls for NIH to halt ‘dangerous’ study of sepsis treatment by Sharon Begley - The group, Public Citizen, says in a letter dated Tuesday that the study’s protocol is also so “fundamentally flawed” that it will not produce reliable findings.

Preliminary US-Mexico trade deal leaves trail of uncertainty

8/27/2018
KVEO: Preliminary US-Mexico trade deal leaves trail of uncertainty by Paul Wiseman - But other analysts said the answer wasn't clear: "It's a question that has never been tested," said Lori Wallach, director of the left-leaning Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch.

As Planet Warms, Advocates Urge U.S. To Set Rules To Protect Workers From Heat

8/27/2018
WBUR: As Planet Warms, Advocates Urge U.S. To Set Rules To Protect Workers From Heat by Katie Lawrie - Climate change is projected to make an "already bad situation worse" for those working in excessive heat, according to a recent report and petition spearheaded by Public Citizen, a non-profit consumer advocacy group. Both NASA and the American Meteorological Society predict we can expect both more intense and more frequent heat events across the country in coming decades, with huge implications for both indoor and outdoor workers.

Rebuking Trump CFPB for Only Serving Nation's "Most Powerful Financial Companies," Student Loan Watchdog Resigns

8/27/2018
CommonDreams: Rebuking Trump CFPB for Only Serving Nation's "Most Powerful Financial Companies," Student Loan Watchdog Resigns by Jessica Corbett - The top student loan watchdog, Seth Frotman, just resigned from @CFPB. In a scathing resignation letter, Frotman said the CFPB's current leadership "has turned its back on young people and their financial futures."

What the Michael Cohen scandal reveals about corporate lobbying in the age of Trump

8/23/2018
CNBC: What the Michael Cohen scandal reveals about corporate lobbying in the age of Trump by Christina Wilkie - Elsewhere in Washington, a nonprofit watchdog group, Public Citizen, submitted a formal complaint against Cohen to the Justice Department and to congressional offices that oversee lobbying registrations.

Consumer Bureau Nominee Narrowly Clears Divided Senate Panel

8/23/2018
Government Executive: Consumer Bureau Nominee Narrowly Clears Divided Senate Panel by Charles S. Clark - Consumer groups have been lining up against the Kraninger nomination all summer. “As the nation marks the 10-year anniversary of the 2008 financial crash that cost millions of Americans their homes, jobs and savings, America deserves a consumer champion,” said Bartlett Naylor, financial policy advocate at Public Citizen’s Congress Watch Division. “Instead, Kraninger threatens continued deconstruction of the CFPB, begun by the agency’s interim director Mick Mulvaney.”

Mulvaney's long history with key consumer tool puts its future in doubt

8/23/2018
CNN: Mulvaney's long history with key consumer tool puts its future in doubt by Donna Borak, Sara Ganim, Ellie Kaufman and Gregory Wallace - Eight of the 10 companies with the most registered complaints in the CFPB's consumer complaint database made financial contributions to Mulvaney when he was a House lawmaker, according to a report published by Public Citizen, a consumer rights advocacy group, and verified by CNN. Those companies include Wells Fargo, Bank of America, JPMorgan and Citibank, the consumer division of Citigroup, according to CFPB data as of July 27.

White House Admits Trump Is Using Official Events For Midterm Campaigning

8/22/2018
HuffPost: White House Admits Trump Is Using Official Events For Midterm Campaigning by S.V. Date - Craig Holman, with the watchdog group Public Citizen, said Trump and his White House could be violating federal law. “The White House comments make it rather obvious that Trump and his senior staff are mixing campaign work with official work, which, if not managed properly, would constitute violations of reporting requirements, the Federal Election Campaign Act and federal laws prohibiting the use of official resources for campaign activity,” Holman said.

In case of Mueller firing, break glass: Democrats prep an emergency plan

8/22/2018
NBC News Online: In case of Mueller firing, break glass: Democrats prep an emergency plan by Josh Lederman and Mike Memoli - A "Friday group" of Democrats involved in key committees continues to meet weekly to discuss the Russia investigation, while another weekly meeting takes place among a coalition of outside advocacy groups such as MoveOn, Public Citizen, Indivisible, Common Cause and People for the American Way. Liberal legal organizations such as the American Constitution Society are also involved in drafting legal strategies that could be deployed if needed, individuals involved in the effort said. The American Constitution Society didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Cohen and Manafort are guilty. And Trump faces a reckoning

8/22/2018
Los Angeles Times: Cohen and Manafort are guilty. And Trump faces a reckoning by David Lauter, Noah Bierman and Eli Stokols - “It’s actually breathtaking,” said Craig Holman of the liberal watchdog group Public Citizen. “We haven’t seen this many indictments and convictions even during the whole Watergate period,” he said. “The Trump administration’s only been around for about a year and a half.”

Trump Hands States Control Over Coal-Fired Power Plants

8/22/2018
Environment News Service: Trump Hands States Control Over Coal-Fired Power Plants - David Arkush, managing director of Public Citizen’s Climate Program, said today, “Under President Donald Trump’s new plan, state governments that are captive to coal barons will be able to force consumers to subsidize dirty, dangerous coal extraction that can’t compete on the marketplace with natural gas and renewables. Like so many of Trump’s policies, it harms the many to benefit the few.”

Manafort, Cohen developments fuel partisan furor over Mueller probe

8/22/2018
The Washington Times: Manafort, Cohen developments fuel partisan furor over Mueller probe by S.A. Miller - “No witch hunt here,” said Robert Weissman, president of the liberal activist group Public Citizen. “It’s past time for President Trump to stand down on his attacks on the Mueller investigation and accede to the rule of law.”

Retailers Should Check Their Social Media Practices Before the FTC Makes Its Next Move

8/22/2018
Bloomberg: Retailers Should Check Their Social Media Practices Before the FTC Makes Its Next Move by Meegan Brooks and Nilda Nejah - In April 2017, the Commission sent more than 90 educational letters to celebrities such as Jennifer Lopez, Chiara Ferragni (of the Blonde Salad blog) and Victoria Beckham, and to brands such as Chanel and Adidas, to educate them on the need to follow the Endorsement Guides. These letters were informed by a 95-page petition from Public Citizen listing examples of undisclosed sponsored social media content.

Trump hits corporate violators - with a feather

8/20/2018
NBC News Online: Trump hits corporate violators - with a feather by Suzy Khimm - "It's an astoundingly generous approach toward corporate violations," said Rick Claypool, research director at Public Citizen, a liberal consumer advocacy group, which found a sharp drop in corporate enforcement actions throughout the federal government. "Saying, 'We're going to pat you on the back, try better next time,' is not going to deter the kind of wrongdoing at the scale that companies are doing."

Back-to-back court losses show limits of Trump's environment deregulation

8/19/2018
Bloomberg: Back-to-back court losses show limits of Trump's environment deregulation by Ari Natter - "We have enough court losses to indicate this is a losing strategy on the Trump administration's behalf," said Amit Narang, a regulatory policy advocate for watchdog group Public Citizen. "The courts are saying you are repealing a rule by delaying it for this long of a period. And if you are repealing a rule, you have to go through all the procedural requirements."

Business looks to Kavanaugh to extend Supreme Court hot streak

8/15/2018
Politico: Business looks to Kavanaugh to extend Supreme Court hot streak by Lorraine Woellert - “The role the Chamber has been able to play in the last couple decades is to have an important signaling effect about what big business thinks is important,” said Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen. “That’s plainly had an impact on the courts. Neither Public Citizen nor any public interest group has influence as great as that.”

Contractor Rule Could Pit Religious Liberties Against LGBT Rights

8/15/2018
Bloomberg: Contractor Rule Could Pit Religious Liberties Against LGBT Rights by Paige Smith - "This is a way for the administration to attempt to modify the EO without doing so," said Pulver, now with the Public Citizen Litigation Group.

U.S.-Mexico are close to reaching a deal in NAFTA talks, but Canada is still a wild card

8/14/2018
USA Today: U.S.-Mexico are close to reaching a deal in NAFTA talks, but Canada is still a wild card by Michael Collins - The U.S. and Mexico are on the precipice of settling the issues between them, but whether or not there is a final NAFTA deal done before the August deadline now depends on Canada, said Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch.

Wanted: 'Sheriff of Wall Street.' Letitia James Says No Thanks, and Her Rivals Pounce

8/14/2018
The New York Times: Wanted: 'Sheriff of Wall Street.' Letitia James Says No Thanks, and Her Rivals Pounce by Jeffery C. Mays - “We would welcome a New York attorney general who prides themselves on being the Sheriff of Wall Street,” Bartlett Naylor, a financial policy advocate for Public Citizen, a liberal consumer rights organization, said in an interview.

In 2014, political spending at Trump properties was $35K. In 2018, it's 3.5M.

8/13/2018
McClatchy: In 2014, political spending at Trump properties was $35K. In 2018, it's 3.5M. by Ben Wieder and Anita Kumar - “Rather than fully divest his properties, Trump has raised the art of the self-deal to unprecedented heights, allowing political campaigns to effectively pay tribute to the most powerful person in today’s Republican party through spending at Trump’s own properties,” said Alan Zibel, research director at Public Citizen’s Corporate Presidency Project, which has conducted some research into the spending of federal agencies and political groups at Trump businesses.

Congress dawdles as #MeToo scandals rage on

8/11/2018
Politico: Congress dawdles as #MeToo scandals rage on by Elana Schor and Heather Caygle - Remington Gregg, a counsel at Public Citizen, hailed the House for “remaining committed” in the face of “mind-boggling” resistance from the GOP-controlled Senate. “I hope that, given they’re still trying to iron these things out, it suggests that the House remains united, that Republicans and Democrats remain united in ensuring the strong bill that they passed” becomes law, Gregg said in an interview.

GOP congressman from New York charged with insider trading

8/8/2018
Associated Press: GOP congressman from New York charged with insider trading by Tom Hays - The advocacy group Public Citizen filed a request for an investigation of Collins' stock dealings with the Office of Congressional Ethics and the Securities and Exchange Commission in January 2017.

House speaker boots indicted lawmaker from committee

8/8/2018
Associated Press: House speaker boots indicted lawmaker from committee - The advocacy group Public Citizen had claimed Collins was potentially involved in insider trading of shares of Innate Immunotherapeutics, which was experimenting with a drug for treating multiple sclerosis.

Trump Legal Expense Fund Has Little to Show for Its Efforts

8/7/2018
Bloomberg: Trump Legal Expense Fund Has Little to Show for Its Efforts by Ken Doyle - “I would have guessed the Fund would have millions by now,” said Public Citizen lobbyist Craig Holman, who filed a complaint against the legal fund. “Evidently, there is some indecision whether this is the right path to help pay for legal expenses.”

Where are retiring Congress members going to work? Loopholes let them job hunt in secret

8/5/2018
USA TODAY: Where are retiring Congress members going to work? Loopholes let them job hunt in secret by Bill Theobald - A report released last summer by the group Public Citizen found that only about 2 percent of the 349 House members who retired, resigned or lost re-election from 2008 through 2016 disclosed any negotiations for future employment. Only about 14 percent of 59 Senate members who left during that period made such disclosures.

US trade deficit widens by $46 billion in June

8/3/2018
Associated Press: US trade deficit widens by $46 billion in June by Paul Wiseman - "The president promised a transformation of trade policy to bring down the deficit," said Lori Wallach, director of the left-leaning Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch. Trump, she said, "has not lived up to his promises."

Mexico touts progress in NAFTA talks with U.S., but toughest issues remain

8/3/2018
Reuters: Mexico touts progress in NAFTA talks with U.S., but toughest issues remain by Daphne Psaledakis and David Lawder - Lori Wallach, head of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch division, a Washington-based public advocacy group, said the views of the United States and Mexico were converging on NAFTA policy, in large part because Lopez Obrador’s team had been backing the U.S. objective to raise wages for automotive workers. She suggested negotiators for the United States and Mexico would near an agreement in principle and say to Canada: “Come on in the pool, the water’s fine. We’re almost there, come make it tri-national with us.”

Trump to Sessions: Stop the Mueller Investigation 'Right Now'

8/2/2018
The Washington Times: Trump to Sessions: Stop the Mueller Investigation 'Right Now' by Gabriel Munoz and Dave Boyer - “President Donald Trump’s tweet today calling for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to end special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation is a dangerous attempt to undermine the rule of law and should be disregarded,” said Lisa Gilbert, the group’s vice president of legislative affairs. She said Mr. Trump “has no business interfering in the investigation, which is looking into whether he and his campaign colluded with Russia to sway the 2016 elections."

Trump administration wants to freeze gas-mileage standards, reversing Obama

8/2/2018
Detroit Free Press and USA TODAY: Trump administration wants to freeze gas-mileage standards, reversing Obama by Todd Spangler and Nathan Bomey - That's "laughable," said Robert Weissman, president of watchdog group Public Citizen, in a statement. "That claim gives fig leaves a bad name." Weissman said the "the Trump administration’s rollback of clean car standards is a disastrous wreck for consumers and the planet" and said it will force Americans "to pay more at the pump and breathe dirtier air."

These lame ducks still fly - on the taxpayer's dime - often to faraway countries

8/2/2018
USA TODAY: These lame ducks still fly - on the taxpayer's dime - often to faraway countries by Bill Theobald - "The problem is many of these trips are really much more like paid vacations than fact-finding trips,” said Craig Holman, government affairs lobbyist for the good-government group Public Citizen.

OSHA releases final rule updating beryllium exposure limits

8/2/2018
Safety+Health Online: OSHA releases final rule updating beryllium exposure limits - “This is a very unique regulation, especially in the realm of worker safety and health, where the largest company in the industry affected by the rule comes to OSHA and acknowledges the current regulation has to be changed and presents a proposal along with a major union to OSHA,” said Dr. Sammy Almashat, a researcher with Washington-based watchdog organization Public Citizen’s Health Research Group. “We don’t see how it can be justified if Congress decided to do away with this.”