I waited for the call after Christmas to come to the signing ceremony after the passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act, but it did not come. Frankly, it still seems odd that the President would miss an opportunity to showcase the first major piece of food safety legislation in over 50 years.
This is all the President said about food safety in his speech tonight:
To reduce barriers to growth and investment, I’ve ordered a review of government regulations. When we find rules that put an unnecessary burden on businesses, we will fix them. But I will not hesitate to create or enforce commonsense safeguards to protect the American people. That’s what we’ve done in this country for more than a century. It’s why our food is safe to eat, our water is safe to drink, and our air is safe to breathe. It’s why we have speed limits and child labor laws. It’s why last year, we put in place consumer protections against hidden fees and penalties by credit card companies, and new rules to prevent another financial crisis. And it’s why we passed reform that finally prevents the health insurance industry from exploiting patients.
With the CDC estimated 48,000,00 American’s sickened, 125,000 hospitalized and 3,000 deaths, it would seem that the President would make food safety a bit more of a front and center issue.