Below are the details of how Governor Rick Perry put the financial considerations of his “big business special interest cronies” before the rights of Texas parents and the wellbeing of Texas children. There is a clear financial connection between a drug giant Merck & Co. (maker of the dangerous and withdrawn drug, Vioxx), top Austin lobbyist Mike Toomey, and Rick Perry’s own campaign.
Perry’s campaign received a campaign contribution from the drug giant, Merck & Co., which manufactures a controversial drug named Gardisil, a vaccine against the sexually-transmitted disease known as Human Papillomavirus (HPV), on the same day his top aide participated in a briefing about the drug.
Although a major independent review of the drug had not been completed, late on the Friday afternoon before Super Bowl Sunday, without any input from parents or legislators, Perry rushed Executive Order-RP65, which mandates “vaccination of all female children for HPV prior to admission to the sixth grade.”
Parents were outraged, so the Legislature checked Perry’s power and overturned his unilateral mandate, which would have added nearly $300 million to Perry’s $18 billion present-day budget shortfall. Since the rejection of Perry’s mandate, the drug has been associated with a number of serious adverse events following its use.