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Arsenic-Flavored Baby Food?

House GOP members have been attacking clean air standards by pumping the stalled budget bill up with “riders” that remove the agency’s ability to clean up mercury, dioxins, arsenic and a host of other toxic chemicals from power plants, cement kilns, incinerators and the like.

But last week, a group called American Family Voices ran some compelling ads in the Washington, D.C. region targeting the value of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's efforts and the benefits of the Clean Air Act to get this pollution out of our lungs and out of the lungs of our children.

Here’s the ad:

The Clean Air Act is one of our most successful environmental laws, yet Republican members want to yank the floor out from beneath the EPA as it works to enforce the law to clean up these polluters. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson has said that the “total benefits of the Clean Air Act amount to more than 40 times the costs of regulation;” for every dollar spent on cleaning up the air, we see $40 in return, a much better investment than anything you’d find on Wall Street.

Mike Lux of American Family Voices said, “The Clean Air Act prevented 160,000 early deaths last year, including 230 infants, yet Congress is busy working to prevent the EPA from updating and enforcing standards that would limit toxic pollutants that endanger the public health. If we don’t curb those pollutants, they’ll end up in our air, water and food and eventually in our children. Congress needs to let the EPA do its job to protect public health.”

AFV went a step further to promote their new commercial to Congress by dropping off baby food jars labeled with “arsenic,” “mercury,” and “lead.” But instead of baby food, the jars contained a thumb drive loaded with the new ad. Pretty slick ad production and a strong message to Congress that the Clean Air Act and the EPA really do have an impact…especially in protecting the health of those who most need it.

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