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Friday, April 14, 2006

Cantwell sends letter to Rumsfeld demanding answers on depleted uranium

Today, Senator Maria Cantwell sent a letter to Donald Rumsfeld on the question of medical research on servicemembers exposed to depleted uranium (DU) aerosols, NPI has learned.

David Edelman, who has put a lot of energy into researching this, explains:
The core of the letter relied on questions that Dr. Tim Takaro and I framed after a month-long examination of the Department of Defense's so-called "Capstone Study." I have been assured that Sen. Cantwell's commitment to this issue will extend beyond this letter. I hope to have more news in the near future.

While this letter is not the end of the depleted uranium issue, it is an accomplishment that comes after a great deal of work. In particular, I'd like to recognize Dr. Tim Takaro of Simon Frazier University, without whose help this letter would not have been possible.

I'd also like to thank task force members Amy Hagopian and Aaron Katz (University of Washington) and Alice Woldt (36th District Democrats) for their support, advice and practical help.

In addition, I like to thank the following for their support: Kelley Bevans (36th District Democrats, Issues Chair); Peter House (36th District Democrats, Chair); Jason Bennett (36th District Democrats, Executive Board member); Ken Kadlec (Legislative Aide, Rep. McDermott's office, and 43rd District Democrats); Judith Shattuck (45th District Democrats, Executive Board Member); Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility; the 45th District Democrats; the 43rd District Democrats; the Washington State Democratic Central Committee and its Progressive Caucus; and Democracy for Washington.

I would also like to thank the hard-working members (current and former) of Sen. Cantwell's staff: Lisa Cipollone (former King County director); Bill Dunbar (former State director); Layth Elhassani (former Legislative Director for Foreign Affairs); Jennifer Griffith (Deputy Chief of Staff and Legislative Director); Kurt Beckett (Chief of Staff); and Jonathan Hale (Legislative Director for Foreign Affairs).

Finally, I would like to express my deep gratitude to Sen. Cantwell for demonstrating her commitment to this critical issue.
We applaud Senator Cantwell for sending this letter. We hope she will continue to demonstrate to progressives that she does care about these very important matters.

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