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January, 2016


Obama proposes new rules to close the gender pay gap even though there’s a 16% gender pay gap in his White House

The persistent gender pay gap at the Obama White House has been well-documented on CD. In 2015, the median salary for women working at the White House was $65,650, which is 15.8% and $12,350 less than the median salary of $78,000 for men (see chart above), see CD post here. It’s highly likely that the unadjusted 15.8% difference in aggregate salaries at the White House can be explained by factors other than gender discrimination, and I discuss those reasons here. But it’s also highly likely that the overall national gender pay gap of 17% (according to the most recent BLSRead More

A regional look at charter school diversity

As National School Choice Week draws to a close, we have seen over 16,000 events planned, many scarves passed out, and even an official dance. Although the week celebrates all educational options, from public to private to online and homeschooling, many people think specifically of charter schools when they hear the words “school choice.” The number of charter schools, and of students attending charter schools, continues to grow across the United States, and in July my colleague Mike McShane and I released a paper that catalogued the different types of charter schools available in 17 different cities. We found thatRead More

Compounding labs: No answer for high prices

Before 2012, the Food and Drug Administration reluctantly embraced the basic framework advocated by Mark Baum (“A New Prescription for Lower Drug Prices,” op-ed, Jan. 26). The FDA allowed compounders to manufacture and ship some medicines on a wide scale, absent the agency’s usual oversight, simply because compounded drugs could be sold more cheaply. One of those firms was the New England Compounding Center (NECC). In 2012 one of NECC’s drugs became tainted, killing 64 Americans and sickening 800 others. Drug compounding was supposed to be confined to pharmacies that made specialized drugs for individual patients. Companies like NECC usedRead More

Washington’s prescription for cheaper, and unregulated medicines

In 2011, in an effort to bring a lower-cost drug to the market, the Food and Drug Administration was forced to accept the widespread compounding of a specialty drugs. The agency’s submission involved an old, and previously cheap, generic medicine that had secured some renewed exclusivity, and was being sold as a higher-priced specialty drug. But the FDA’s move deliberately undermined the agency’s own approval requirements. Twenty20 License It sent an unambiguous message that FDA wouldn’t try to enforce its already weakened authority over compounding–so long as the price of the knock-off drug was right. The compounding of drugs grew precipitouslyRead More

2016 Data Point: Will Trump’s supporters turn out in Iowa?

One of the looming questions of the GOP Iowa caucus is whether Donald Trump’s supporters will show up to caucus even though many of them appear not to have attended a caucus before. A new Monmouth University poll of likely Iowa Republican caucus-goers estimated that for Trump to win, turnout would need to be around 170,000, which would far surpass the GOP record of 122,000 set in 2012. In a recent Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register poll of likely Iowa caucus-goers, approximately a third of Trump’s supporters said this year’s GOP caucus would be their first, compared to 22 percent forRead More

2016 Data Point: Getting from Iowa to the GOP nomination

How important is the Iowa caucus in determining the Republican nominee for president? Of the last seven competitive Republican presidential primaries, the winner in Iowa has won the party’s nomination three times: Gerald Ford in 1976, Bob Dole in 1996, and George W. Bush in 2000. John McCain came in fourth in the 2008 Iowa caucus. In 2012, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum tied with 24 percent each, but Romney technically lost. Source: New AEI Feed 2016 Data Point: Getting from Iowa to the GOP nomination