Juan Mendez’s Plagiarized HCR2005 Committee Speech

In 2014, then-State Representative Juan Mendez delivered a committee speech explaining his opposition to “Right To Try” legislation. Mendez told his colleagues that he had “consulted experts” before coming to his decision. That was not true.

A review of Mendez’s testimony has found that significant portions of the speech were plagiarized from a website that once called the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School a “hoax” and implied that no one at the school really died that day. (We will cite the website’s name below for fact-checking purposes, but we will not be linking to the website for obvious reasons.)

Other portions of the speech are plagiarized from Wikipedia. You can read our story about the plagiarism HERE or check out the substantiating research below.

The text in blue is intended to highlight the plagiarized portions. The text in bold is intended to highlight subtle changes made by Mendez, possibly in order to evade plagiarism-checking services.

HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION 2005
COMMITTEE SPEECH

Mendez Plagiarized A Conspiracy Theory Website, Part 1:

WHAT MENDEZ SAID:Cancer doctor Dean Gesme of the Minnesota Oncology Hematology Professional Association has charged efforts like this bill as attempts to generate false hope in patients when the reality is that less than 10 percent of drugs beginning Phase I safety trials are eventually adopted as viable treatments. Among these, most provide only incremental benefits. Very few are life-savers.” (House Reform And Human Services, Time Stamp: 00:48:10, Arizona Capitol Television, 02/13/14)

WHAT MENDEZ PLAGIARIZED:Cancer doctor Dean Gesme, of the Minnesota Oncology Hematology Professional Association, charged that the rules will engender false hope in patients, when less than 10 percent of drugs beginning phase I safety trials are eventually adopted as viable treatments. Among these, most provide only incremental benefits; few are life-savers.” (David Gutierrez, “FDA Wants Big Pharma To Use Terminally Ill Patients As Guinea Pigs For Unapproved Drugs,” Natural News, 02/12/08)

Mendez Plagiarized Wikipedia:

WHAT MENDEZ SAID:If this legislation is successful, if we provide almost unfettered legal access to experimental drugs by terminally ill patients, we will be radically altering the conduct of clinical cancer research as patients would then have little incentive to enter Phase II and Phase III clinical trials, which are our only means to determine side effects and efficiency of new drugs. While eligibility factors and geography may limit the ability of some terminally ill patients to access new drugs through clinical trials, these trials exist for the public safety of the entire community and serve to protect patients by collecting safety and efficiency data on new drugs under controlled circumstances.” (House Reform And Human Services, Time Stamp: 00:48:40, Arizona Capitol Television, 02/13/14)

WHAT MENDEZ PLAGIARIZED:If the Abigail Alliance had been successful in court, the suit would have radically altered the conduct of clinical cancer research, by providing almost unfettered legal access to experimental drugs by terminally ill patients, who would then have little incentive to enter Phase II and Phase III clinical trials, which are used to determine side effects and efficacy of new drugs. While eligibility factors and geography may limit the ability of some terminally ill patients to access new drugs through clinical trials, those trials also protect patients by collecting safety and efficacy data on new drugs under controlled circumstances.” (“Abigail Alliance For Better Access To Developmental Drugs v. Von Eschenbach,” Wikipedia, Revised 01/14/08)

Mendez Plagiarized A Conspiracy Theory Website, Part 2:

WHAT MENDEZ SAID:Testing these drugs on terminally ill patients would be unfair to the patients and would potentially delay approval by obscuring the drug’s long-term effects. False hope for unapproved drugs can also erode the clinical trial system by substituting clinical enthusiasm and wishful thinking for evidence-based medicine.” (House Reform And Human Services, Time Stamp: 00:49:15, Arizona Capitol Television, 02/13/14)

WHAT MENDEZ PLAGIARIZED:Testing these drugs on terminally ill patients would be unfair to the patients, and would potentially delay approval by obscuring the drugs’ long-term effects. ‘False hopes for unproved drugs can also erode the clinical trials system by substituting clinical enthusiasm and wishful thinking for evidence based medicine,’ Gesme said.” (David Gutierrez, “FDA Wants Big Pharma To Use Terminally Ill Patients As Guinea Pigs For Unapproved Drugs,” Natural News, 02/12/08)

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