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Data Quality Act

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The Data Quality Act is a 2-sentence piece of legislation -- drafted by lobbyists and snuck into the 2000 spending bill -- that directs the White House Office of Management and Budget to issue guidelines "ensuring and maximizing the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of information . . . disseminated by Federal agencies."

Jim Tozzi, the industry friendly lobbyist who helped create the little-known "Data Quality Act," is offering his assistance to medical marijuana advocates who are using the Act to undermine government claims that marijuana has no accepted medical value.

Enacted in 2000, the Data Quality Act has been used by businesses to challenge government reports on such things as climate change and diet. In mid-July 2005 the Los Angeles Times writes that Tozzi's support of medical marijuana "had more than just altruistic motives. Since its inception, the Data Quality Act has been under attack as a weapon of big business, a stealthy way to keep federal agencies tied in knots over what constitutes sound science. Eager to blunt such criticism and dash attempts to thwart his law in Congress, Tozzi has pushed public interest groups to start deploying the act against the bureaucrats."

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