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A Curious Letter from Newt Gingrich on OTA

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A Curious Letter from Newt Gingrich on OTA

May 23, 2019

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Looking through former Rep. Rush Holt's (D-NJ) archives, I found this curious letter from Newt Gingrich to Rep. Amo Houghton (R-NY) on the Office of Technology Assessment dated January 10, 2006. In it he writes: "I agree with your thoughts about the essential nature of the OTA, and I am very interested in finding new ways to re-establish this very important institution.” The context for this was likely the 2005 discussion draft version of this bill, which Reps. Houghton and Holt were sponsoring.

I guess this means Gingrich was against it (since he defunded it), for it briefly, and is now against it again.

Speaking of people who had a change of heart, Niskanen Center president Jerry Taylor recalls working to defund it at Cato, and now supports its revival. And former Rep. Bob Inglis (R-SC), who was one of its early opponents, admitted he was "rather dimwitted on science" at the time, and is open to bringing it back.

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