Louise Kuo Habakus:
“My name is Louise Kuo Habakus. I’m the director of the Center for Personal Choice. Together with the people who are standing here today, we represent over 100,000 families, professionals, and advocates who work for the interests of the autism community, for vaccine safety, and for those who care about health freedom.”
Mary Holland, Esq spoke first.
"We're deeply disappointed in the Supreme Court's decision last week in Bruesewitz v. Wyeth. It violated the social contract. It told parents that if your children are injured by vaccines, tough luck! You're on your own. . . .
"You'll hear that this program doesn't work, you'll hear that it's broken, and it's not remotely a court. There are no rules of evidence or procedure, or discovery, or a jury of one's peers. It's a program that is stacked against families...because vaccine injuries make vaccines look bad. Children in the U.S. are conscripted into a war against infectious disease but without real consent and without adequate information. With this Supreme Court decision, many more children are likely to be injured and left dead on the battlefield. The government and doctors assert that vaccines are safe and effective, but the Supreme Court acknowledges that they are indeed, unavoidably unsafe. With this decision, the Supreme Court grants almost blanket immunity from law suits to an entire industry for compulsory products. If vaccines are really so safe and effective, why does industry need so much protection? And why are children left so defenseless by law with no access to any court? Justice Sotomayor got it right in her dissent. She said Congress intended to leave the courthouse doors open for children who have suffered severe injuries from defectively designed vaccines. She wrote that the majority's decision was policy-driven and that the Court had usurped Congress's role. We look to Congress to hold hearings about the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program and to fix this system. The VICP is unacceptable in its current form."
Russ Bruesewitz: 4:53-8:33
“We are… parents of Hannah Bruesewitz, who in a recently decided Supreme Court case was denied the opportunity to hold the drug manufacturer accountable for the vaccine she received at six months of age. Almost 20 years ago, …literally two hours after receiving the vaccine, she started to seize uncontrollably, eventually regressing into brain damage and a lifetime of around-the-clock care. While the court’s decision was obviously disappointing for us personally, the future concern for all parents faced with a vaccine decision should be ONE: What incentives are in place to assure manufacturers are offering the safest alternative? And TWO: What help is available if their worst fears are realized and a vaccine injury occurs after complying with mandated vaccination?
“From our perceptive, the court’s decision answered both of these concerns with a definitive NONE. Putting this in context, the Court’s decision has granted an immunity to drug manufacturers not afforded to any other industry. … Recalls have become commonplace for … companies when discovering their products have safety issues in the marketplace. Drug companies on the other hand, have no such responsibility, legal or otherwise. Imagine Toyota ignoring question regarding the public safety of their braking system, secure in the knowledge that if found to be legitimate, they wouldn’t be prosecuted, incur any loss of revenue, or even be forced to take corrective action. That’s what’s been decided. While initially tempted to recall all the obstacles we experienced leading up to the Court’s decision, our overriding frustration has been our experience with the inappropriately named, Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, specifically, its Vaccine Court component. Originally established by Congress to swiftly and generously to address vaccine-injured petitioners in a less adversarial setting, our experience as has most everyone’s, been anything but the intended. If now left with this court as the only recourse for dealing with the long-term care needs of a vaccine injury, its credibility needs to be restored. Our legal journey is over. The final verdict has been rendered and our daughter’s condition remains the same. Everyday parents are placing their trust in a vaccination program they assume has the safeguards in place to warrant their participation.
“As a parent, how would you answer these questions?
“Is our Hannah an acceptable casualty of the greater good being served?
“Will she ever be capable of understanding the questionable sincerity of Pfizer’s General Counsel, Amy Schulman, in her expression of sympathy in a press release about our decision?
“How many other children and families will be forced to deal with a system currently tilted toward protection of manufacturers over injured vaccine recipients?
“We realize life isn’t always fair, but must our system follow suit?”
Emily Tarsell 8:52-11:53 (Whose daughter Christina died after receiving the Gardasil series)
“To the families and consumers out there, did you know that vaccine manufacturers are protected by law against lawsuits for injuries and deaths from their products, even if the damages resulted from a defectively designed vaccine? There is no other industry that has that kind of blanket protection against liability for death or injury caused by their product. For vaccine manufacturers, it’s all profit, no liability. And since they can’t be held accountable, there’s no incentive for vaccine manufacturers to do the research to insure product safety and effectiveness and to improve their product. I had always assumed vaccines are safe and effective. I trusted the advice of a gynecologist my daughter visited when she recommended Gardasil vaccine. But I was wrong, very, very wrong. Gardasil’s one of those vaccines that was rushed to market without adequate testing. There’s no long term safety data. It was approved in just six months. And my daughter was the victim of a vaccine she did not even need. Chris died eighteen days after her third injection with Gardasil. This is a picture of Chris. And she’s not alone. There are now 93 deaths, and those are just the ones we know of, that have been reported, post Gardasil, as well as 21,000 adverse events, many of which are very serious injuries. And the pharmaceutical industry has no liability. People have to know that there are serious adverse reactions to Gardasil. People have to know that there are deaths. And people have to know that the law protects the manufacturer and not you. All profit, no liability. So the manufacturer is motivated to make more vaccines and make them as quickly as possible. There are dozens, maybe hundreds of vaccines in the pipeline, and they’ll be targeting you and your family. So watch out.”
Rolf Hazlehurst, Esq (Father of an autistic child whose claim was denied in Vaccine Court)
"My son's case was the second test case in the Omnibus Autism Proceeding in what is known as Vaccine Court. ...My son is eleven years old. He suffers severe and permanent brain damage. In all probability, he'll spend his adult life locked in a mental institution. ... When you consider that the rate of autism has risen from one in 10,000 to one in 100 in less than twenty years, we as parents have a moral obligation to legitimately question vaccine safety. ...If I had time to explain, I'd like to talk about the financial conflicts of interest between the pharmaceutical industry, the FDA, and the CDC, but unfortunately, that would take all day.
"The main point I want to talk about is my personal experience in Vaccine Court. For twenty-five years, the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Act of 1986 has kept vaccine-injured children out of state and federal court. It should be called the National Vaccine Manufacturers Protection Act. ... For twenty-five years, the government has said that before you can go to a court of law, you must first to Vaccine Court. It's highly misleading for the government to refer to Vaccine Court as a court. In Vaccine Court, there is no judge, no jury, and the most basic rules of law do not apply. The rules of evidence do not apply. The rules of civil procedure do not apply. The rules of discovery do not apply. In Vaccine Court, the rule of law and the American legal system has been replaced by what is known as a Special Master. A Special Master is nothing more than a politically appointed, governmen t attorney. Vaccine Court is nothing more than a procedural hurdle that has kept the vaccine-autism issue out of court for twenty-five years. I truly believe that if it were not for the Vaccine Act of 1986, the autism epidemic would not be possible. I've been an attorney for 15 years and in my personal opinion the actions of the government officials in Vaccine Court is part of the most frightening and blatant abuse of power that I've ever witnessed.
"I'd like to explain just one example. ... That's the case of Hannah Poling and what I call the the Zimmerman issue. In essence, Dr. Zimmerman is one of the top neurologists in the country. He was an expert witness for the government. He submitted a written opinion which stated, there is no scientific basis for a connection between the MMR, mercury intoxication, and autism.
"When the Cedillo case went to trial, the government did not call Dr. Zimmerman as a witness. But since we're not in a court of law, his opinion was allowed to remain in. Dr. Zimmerman subsequently filed a second opinion. He filed it on behalf of his colleague, for Hannah Poling. In that opinion, Dr. Zimmerman's opinion states words to the effect that she suffered a vaccine injury which manifested as autism. Manifested as autism, is autism.
"In the first opinion, our government relied upon his evidence. In the second, contradictory opinion of Dr. Zimmerman, the government placed it under seal and it was not allowed to be used as evidence. In fact, during the closing arguments in my son's case, the government's attorney read from Dr. Zimmerman's report, read that there is no basis that thimerosal-containing vaccines and the MMR cause autism. However, it was only three weeks later that the same government attorneys used Dr. Zimmerman's second contradictory opinion to secretly and very quietly compensate Hannah Poling. I submit that the government compensated Hannah Poling as a tactical decision and procedural maneuver to prevent Dr. Zimmerman's second opinion from being used as evidence.
"I want to clarify. I am in no way critical of the Polings. They have done anything wrong at all. For that matter, I'm not critical of Dr. Zimmerman. In fact, the Polings filed what is called a motion for complete transparency. Basically what that means is Hannah Poling's parents wanted to talk about their child's case. They wanted to make their child's medical records public. They wanted to make their child's records public in order to help other children. The government opposed that motion for complete transparency, continues to oppose that motion for complete transparency and has done everything that they possibly can to prevent her records from being used as evidence. ...I sincerely believe that the records in Hannah Poling's case could help an untold number of other children. ...I do not contend that Dr. Zimmerman did anything unethical or wrong. He's an expert in a ...rapidly deve loping field of medicine; he's entitled to change his opinion. What is wrong is for the government to have one expert with two opinions, use the opinion which says vaccines do not cause autism, take the second opinion, which said that the vaccines did cause autism, and seal it up.
"In a strange twist of fate, my son Yates was also was also a patient of Dr. Zimmerman. My son also has the same neurological diagnosis, regressive encephalopathy with features of an autism spectrum disorder. Dr. Julie Gerberding, who's the former head of the CDC, tried to twist this into, oh well, Hannah Poling's case is different from everybody else's. She's really not autistic. It’s all a mitochondrial disorder. I don't doubt that Hannah Poling does have a mitochondrial disorder. We subsequently learned that my child has a mitochondrial disorder. In fact, many of the parents that I know who’ve been able to afford to have their children tested, [have found that their children have] a mitochondrial disorder.
"The President promised us complete transparency. That's not the case in the autism proceeding. Again the government has done everything that it can to prevent the fact that the government's expert witness submitted two contradictory affidavits, the government using the one that is favorable and sealing up the one that is not. The actions of the government in sealing up Dr. Zimmerman's second contradictory opinion is wrong, dishonest, corrupt, obstruction of justice. I would call it perpetration of fraud upon the court, except we're not in the court, we're in the so-called Vaccine Court. Now the Supreme Court has told us that in almost any case, if your child is injured, you cannot go to a court of law. Instead, you mu st go to Vaccine Court. I submit to you, look up kangaroo court, in a legal dictionary and it'll describe the Vaccine Court to a tee. Unfortunately, in the past nine years, I 've learned more than I ever wanted to about vaccines, autism, the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Act of 1986. And of this I am certain: One of the fundamental causes of the autism epidemic is the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Act of 1986. This program is broken and it is out of control. I hope every American will join us in demanding a Congressional inquiry into the vaccine program. I think most Americans would be shocked if they knew what has happened.”
Jim Turner, Esq (DC based attorney who’s been fighting for safer vaccine policy for forty years)
“The vaccine safety debate has arrived at a point when it is be held out and handled in public. It’s time for the Congress to go back and visit its legislation. I was involved in this activity all the way back starting in 1970. We were able to at that time, stop the swine flu vaccine of 1976 by just putting out the science and showing that it was causing more harm help. We thought that that was going to be a very important wakeup call for Americans. The response was to create a compensation act that prevented the actual debate from taking place in courts and really taking place in Congress. Congress thought it had solved the problem. We now know, as a result of this case decided last week, that the issue remains a hot, significant issue for people all across the country. Vaccine supporters, vaccine users, vaccine resisters, vaccine critics, all of us, all of the people who are involved in this country, now need to face up to the fact that this is a live debate and it is something that needs to be addressed. Over $2 billion has been paid to families whose children have either died or been maimed by a vaccine.
“This is an unconscionable act for products that are required for children to take. We now have a situation where children are required on one end to take vaccines, and on the other, are prevented from being able to litigate whatever harms may come from those vaccines. The Congress must now step in and at a bare minimum, clarify what it intended, which was this was something that was to be done either as an alternative to or a preliminary to going to court. Congress never meant for the court to be cut out of this process. The best thing to be done is just to repeal the act and go forward with the litigation. It would be a very short time before this vaccine matter would be a very clear, solid issue that would be debated in the country and I predict for you that we would have a very proper balance between vaccine use and vaccine resistance.”
“In last week’s decision in Bruesewitz v. Wyeth, the Supreme Court got it wrong. You just heard from three families that paid the highest possible price. Their children were destroyed by vaccines. You just heard from three attorneys who told us that the law has failed us. Our government doesn’t get it. Industry has no legal duty to make safer vaccines. Without this motivation, we will never get safer vaccines. The Vaccine Injury Compensation Program is broken. It is not functional and this is a very big problem. It’s a big problem because Americans vaccinate their children. American children are required to receive between 30 and 45 doses of 12 vaccines for school admission. If the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program is as corrupt as these families say, and many others say, then this injustice affects every single family in America. It’s intolerable. This is a profound betrayal of trust and we won’t stand for it. We call for Congress to call hearings into the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. If you want to understand how we got here, we ask you to read a new book called Vaccine Epidemic. Mary Holland and I are co-editors. There are 25 contributing authors. It’s a story about corruption in industry, medicine and government. And it’s a story about individuals, children, adults, soldiers, parents, and what happens when vaccines go wrong.”