Who does the US FDA answer to? Well, apparently it’s Pfizer, the German-based Big Pharma megalith.
Just days before the FDA was set to release over 12,000 documents related to the experimental Covid-19 vaccines, Pfizer asked a federal court to allow it to intervene before any information is released to the public.
Unsurprisingly, the FDA wholeheartedly agreed, asking the court to allow the vaccine maker to ‘help’ curate the documents, which would also buy the agency more time to release the much anticipated, and likely damning, data.
Conflict of interest? What’s that?
Last month, The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released the first batch of documents related to Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine after a federal judge ordered that they must comply with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request that was filed by a government accountability group called Public Health and Medical Professionals for Transparency.
In all, the FDA must produce over 500,000 pages of data related to the safety and efficacy of the experimental Covid vaccines.
The first drop, which only included 500 pages, included damning information and revealed that there were over 1,200 vaccine-related deaths within the first 90 days of the vaccine’s rollout.
After the first batch of documents was released, the FDA begged a federal judge to allow them a ridiculous 55-75 years to release the full swath of documents that is in the agency’s possession, but, thankfully, Texas Northern District Judge Mark Pittman ruled against the request, and demanded that the agency fork the entirety of its vaccine records over within the next few months, at a rate of 55,000 every 30 days.
Thanks to Pittman’s decision, the next deadline for the agency to release documents is on January 31st and requires the FDA to turn over 12,000 pages, with the rest coming monthly after that.
Despite the court order, the FDA and Pfizer are scrambling to prevent any more documents from ever seeing the light of day.
A few days ago, lawyers representing Pfizer asked Judge Pittman to allow the company to intervene and have access to the documents in order to run their own redactions before they are ever released to the public.
One of the lawyers who filed the FOIA request – Aaron Kheriaty, tweeted out the concerning development on Wednesday.
Pfizer has intervened in our FOIA request to the FDA for release of their vaccine safety/efficacy data, which the judge ordered to be released in 8 mos. DOJ lawyers for the FDA agreed that they want Pfizer's help in redacting the documents before release.https://t.co/vkeQw5fuLv
— Aaron Kheriaty, MD (@akheriaty) January 27, 2022
According to a motion that was filed on Jan 21st by attorneys representing Pfizer, the german-based company “seeks leave to intervene in this action for the limited purpose of ensuring that information exempt from disclosure under FOIA is adequately protected as FDA complies with this Court’s order.”
Apparently, they claim to support the public release of the documents, but want to ensure the data is not “disclosed inappropriately.”
In fact, Pfizer supports the transparency so much that they are willing to threaten the judge with a prolonged and bitter legal battle over the documents being made public.
Daniel Tobey, a Pfizer lawyer, explained in court when filing the motion:
“Pfizer does not presently intend to move the Court to reconsider its January 6, 2022 order, but Pfizer is not in a position at this time to waive its ability to do so if circumstances change such that there is good cause at a later time to do so.”
Federal officials in the FDA and DOJ also told the court that they want Pfizer’s ‘help’ with redacting the documents because of “the unprecedented speed with which the Court has ordered FDA to process the records at issue.”
But, as we have pointed out before, this is an awfully weak excuse. The FDA claims to only have 10 people who are tasked with FOIA request document reviews, which it says is not enough to process the documents, hence the 55-75 year request. But the federal agency has over 18,000 employees and could easily shuffle some people around to increase the capacity of their review team.
The federal agency also claims that Pfizer should have a say in what gets redacted from the public because of the “Trade Secrets Act,” which was signed into law under the Obama administration. But the protections provided under that law allow for an owner of a trade secret to sue in federal court when its trade secrets have been misappropriated and does not even imply that a company could intervene in a public records request through the FOIA.
From the FDA’s response to Pfizer’s motion:
“FDA anticipates that coordination with Pfizer to obtain the company’s views as to which portions of the records are subject to Exemption 4, the Trade Secrets Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1905, or other statutory protections will be a necessary component of the agency’s endeavors to meet the extraordinary exigencies of this case.”
Lawyers for the Public Health and Medical Professionals for Transparency (PHMP) immediately filed a separate motion against Pfizer’s request, asking Judge Pittman, once again, to reject the shameless attempt at a cover-up and force the agency to move forward as planned.
As they also point out, the Federal health agency has more than enough resources to adhere to the document release schedule Pittman ruled on earlier this month.
Oh, and by the way, Pfizer has not given any legitimate reason for their requested (and likely criminal) interference.
“Even though the FDA has more than sufficient resources to expeditiously produce the requested documents, and the agency has repeatedly stated its commitment to protecting Pfizer’s interests, Pfizer could still assist the FDA with expediting release of the requested documents.
Pfizer, however, provides no reason why it needs to intervene in this matter to render that purported assistance. Nor can Plaintiff discern why Pfizer needs to intervene in this matter to assist the FDA with expediting release of the requested documents—it can render this assistance without intervening.”
There is a renewed concern that the FDA will continue to delay the release and be uncooperative if Pfizer is actually allowed to step in, according to the PHMP lawyers.
Nevertheless, Judge Pittman is due to hear arguments on Pfizer’s proposed intervention on Jan. 28 in federal court in Fort Worth, Texas.
The Trump-appointed Judge has ruled in favor of transparency since the beginning, so, hopefully, Pittman stays the course and forces the FDA to stick with the timeline that’s in place, and reveal – once and for all – what the rogue Fauci-guided agency is trying so hard to cover-up.
If all goes according to plan, Jan 31st should be the beginning of the end of this pandemic.
Stay tuned for updates.