House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said on Sunday that the U.S. has to figure out how there became a seemingly sudden shortage of baby formula.
Pelosi’s remarks on CNN’s “State of the Union” come as Democrats control the House of Representatives, the Senate, and the White House.
Pelosi said that the president should use the Defense Production Act and that laws need to be changed to allow that to happen.
“In addition to all of this, we have to subject these companies to some scrutiny about the safety of this and how we got to a place where we have babies crying in our country because they’re hungry and the shelves are bare,” Pelosi said. “We have to fill them immediately.”
“I say that as a mother of five, yes, grandmother of nine,” she concluded.
Nancy Pelosi says we must find out how “we got to a place where we have babies crying in our country because they’re hungry and the shelves are bare.”
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TRANSCRIPT PROVIDED VIA CNN:
DANA BASH, CNN HOST: Yes, understandably.
And speaking of families, I want to ask about baby formula and the shortage in America. And one manufacturer expects the shortages to last for the rest of the year. There are American parents who can’t feed their babies right now.
So, when can parents who need help expect that? For example, Madam Speaker, should the present use the Defense Production Act to manufacture more baby formula?
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): Yes, I think so.
But the — as the law is now, it is not possible to do that. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro, who had — she’s the chair of the Appropriations Committee, as you know. She’s been on this case for a while. She was the chair of the new — Ag Committee, Subcommittee on Appropriations, before.
And that’s ag, but it’s also nutrition and everything that goes with that. So we have been talking about that. And she feels quite certain that we have to change the law in order for the Defense Production Act to be called into play. And we certainly should.
But, in the meantime, this week, we have two bills coming up. Bobby Scott, chair of Education and Labor Committee, has a bill to loosen some of the red tape associated with how people can buy formula and other aspects of that. Fifty percent of the formula is purchased under the WIC program, and so to facilitate that, A.
B, we then have another bill that Rosa, Madam Chair, is putting together that will allocate resources for us to be able to purchase more. And that is, there are four countries, Mexico, Chile, Ireland and the Netherlands, who have supply that we may be able to acquire immediately.
Now, the president has rightfully said, rightfully said, we have to be as fast as possible, but as cautious as possible, so that we have safety. In addition to all of this, we have to subject these companies to some scrutiny about the safety of this and how we got to a place where we have babies crying in our country because they’re hungry…
PELOSI: … and the shelves are bare.
We have to fill them immediately.
BASH: Real quick. We’re…
PELOSI: I say that as a mother of five, yes, grandmother of nine.
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