“It is absolutely unacceptable for the FDA to be spying on employees who reach out to members of Congress to expose abuses or wrongdoing in government agencies.”

—REP. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN of Maryland, who was targeted by a U.S. Food and Drug Administration surveillance operation that secretly tracked and analyzed emails from disgruntled agency scientists to members of Congress, lawyers, labor officials, journalists and even President Obama. The surveillance began as an investigation of five scientists in the possible leaking of confidential agency information about the safety and design of medical devices, but grew in 2010 into a broader effort to monitor the “collaboration” between certain FDA opponents and to counter public criticisms and negative information regarding the agency’s medical review process. [via The New York Times]

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