Hillary Clinton pledged to continue Vice President Joe Biden’s cancer moonshot initiative if elected president and called on Congress to pass funding for the effort.
Clinton released a statement affirming her support of the vice president’s crusade against the disease ahead of an appearance with Biden on Monday. She also hinted a role for Biden under a Clinton presidency.
“My Administration will carry out the mission the Vice President has set, and continue to call on his advice, leadership, compassion, and sheer strength of will,” Clinton said. “Together, we will seize this moment. Together, we will make cancer as we know it a disease of the past.”
President Obama announced the cancer moonshot earlier during his State of the Union address in January. He put Biden in charge of it, following the death of the vice president’s son, Beau. The effort has since focused on creating a large research cohort and enhancing researcher’s coordination.
The effort has so far been largely bipartisan. On the Hill, it has become incorporated into the push for larger medical innovation legislation. Last year, the House passed its version of an innovation bill, 21st Century Cures. The Senate’s health committee has passed several individual bills. Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) has said the plan is to pass a broader package, including more funding for the National Institutes of Health, in the fall.
Both parties have said they’re supportive of funding for the cancer moonshot. Clinton called on them to act on this.
“To start, Congress should fulfill the administration’s request for moonshot funding next year,” Clinton said in the statement. “Cancer does not discriminate, and I believe leaders of both parties can come together to tackle this disease as part of a comprehensive effort to improve medical research across diseases, both by restoring robust funding to the National Institutes of Health, including the National Cancer Institute, and by harnessing the power of the private sector.”