Let’s focus on issues, not motives…

In case you missed it, my letter to the editor of the Washington Post, published yesterday, cites some reasons why Representative Pompeo is right to hit the ‘pause’ button on the public database. Here’s the letter, with its headline in print and its headline online.

Missing the merits of Rep. Pompeo’s questions on a federal database

A profile that didn’t further the debate about consumer safety

Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) raises legitimate questions about the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s new public database [“Pompeo turns to Koch in business, politics,” news story, March 21]. It was unfortunate that you focused on motives instead of the valid merits of his concerns, which The Post reported Feb. 27.

The congressman rightly questions whether this database will help consumers. Because of its design, the database could become  just another “yelp.com” — an Internet site for complaints — but with the apparent “seal of approval” that comes from being a federal government Web site. The public will never know which complaints have merit, which do not and which are totally off base. Congress needs to look at how the agency spends scarce public dollars to construct something that could well mislead consumers and undermine our safety mission.

The Post is hyping politics over safety. Consumer safety is not advanced by such a result.

Nancy A. Nord, Washington
The writer is a commissioner of the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

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