Rick Perry Takes Time Off Campaign To Celebrate Expansion Of Federally-Funded Health Center

Today, the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center is announcing the creation of the Institute for Applied Cancer Science, “an effort aimed at converting basic discoveries into new cancer therapies.” The Institute is so significant that Gov. Rick Perry — who regularly praises Texas’ state-of-the-art cancer center and medical research facilities — is taking time off the campaign trail to appear at the announcement.

Interestingly, the center — as well as the University of Texas — is the beneficiary of millions of dollars in federal grants and funding — all of which Perry staunchly opposes and regularly condemns as symptoms of government largess. For instance, the Cancer Center received $1.2 million in state and federal grants in 2010 and $500,000 in fiscal year 2011, including $633,206 from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The University of Texas also benefited from funding included in the Affordable Care Act.

Texas itself has also benefited greatly from health care reform, accepting more than $380 million in early grants and other aid from the federal health law and is currently “waiting for final approval of a new waiver from federal Medicaid rules that could allow the state to draw down an additional $12 billion in funds from the federal government.”