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Publication date: Dec. 1, 2004


A federal judge Nov. 15, 2004, ruled that courts can not enforce the so-called "Data Quality Act," an obscure legislative loophole that industry groups and the Bush administration could use to suppress science that supports health and environmental regulations.

U.S. District Judge Gerald Bruce Lee ruled that courts cannot review complaints about the accuracy of agency data under the DQA, in Salt Institute and Chamber of Commerce of the United States v. Thompson. In that case, the Salt Institute had challenged Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson over government dietary guidelines urging people to use less salt.

It was the second time a federal district judge had ruled that the DQA legislative language, a 12-line rider slipped into an appropriations bill with no hearings, was too flimsy to be enforceable in a court.

Last revised January 22, 2013

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