Dems on science committee urge Trump to get science adviser to reduce vulnerability to fake news

Several Democrats on the House Science Committee wrote a letter to the White House Thursday recommending that President Donald Trump appoint a scientist to lead the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy as a means of preventing fake scientific news from influencing the administration's policies, reports STAT.


"Until the OSTP is adequately staffed and the director position filled by a qualified, objective scientist who understands the difference between alternative news peddled on alt-right websites and legitimate well-vetted scientific facts, we fear that you will continue to be vulnerable to misinformation and fake news," the letter states.

Rep. Don Beyer, D-Va., who was one of two members of Congress to attend the March for science in Washington in April, led the six other Democratic signers of the letter. Mr. Beyer has been an outspoken critic of the Trump administration's climate policies, according to the report.

The other Democratic representatives who signed the letter include Suzanne Bonamici of Oregon; Mark Takano, Jerry McNerney, PhD, and Zoe Lofgren of California; Bill Foster, PhD, of Illinois; and Jacky Rosen of Nevada.

"Where scientific policy is concerned, the White House should make use of the latest, most broadly-supported science," the letter says, according to the report. "You have a tool at your disposal in this regard, should you wish to make use of it, in the Office of Science and Technology Policy."

The OSTP has not had a leader and has been largely unstaffed for months, according to STAT.

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