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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Senate Curbs Money for Poli Sci

The American Political Science Association has failed in its lobbying effort to stop an amendment to curb federal spending on political science. From an APSA release:
This afternoon, the United States Senate delivered a devastating blow to the integrity of the scientific process at the National Science Foundation (NSF) by voting for the Coburn Amendment to the Continuing Appropriations Act of 2013.

Senator Coburn (R-OK) submitted an amendment (SA 65, as modified) to the Mikulski-Shelby Amendment (SA 26) to H.R. 933 (Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act of 2013). The amendment places unprecedented restriction on the national research agenda by declaring the political science study of democracy and public policy out of bounds. The amendment allows only political science research that promotes "national security or the economic interests of the United States."

Adoption of this amendment is a gross intrusion into the widely-respected, independent scholarly agenda setting process at NSF that has supported our world-class national science enterprise for over sixty years.
Below are comments by Senator Coburn, as well as the voice vote by which the amendment passed.  No senator came to the floor to defend political science, but apparently at least one senator voted no.