Anyway, Texas Governor Rick Perry, a REPUBLICAN, signed an executive order to require the vaccine.
In Kentucky, there have been groups advocating the defeat of this bill. I wonder how they feel now.
Bypassing the Legislature, Republican Gov. Rick Perry signed an order Friday making Texas the first state to require that schoolgirls get vaccinated against the sexually transmitted virus that causes cervical cancer.If there's one thing I don't like, it's that Merck is going to be making a ton of profit off of the vaccine.
By issuing an executive order, Perry apparently sidesteps opposition in the Legislature from conservatives and parents' rights groups who fear such a requirement would condone premarital sex and interfere with the way parents raise their children.
Beginning in September 2008, girls entering the sixth grade — meaning, generally, girls ages 11 and 12 — will have to get Gardasil, Merck & Co.'s new vaccine against strains of the human papillomavirus, or HPV.
Perry, a conservative Christian who opposes abortion and stem-cell research using embryonic cells, counts on the religious right for his political base. But he has said the cervical cancer vaccine is no different from the one that protects children against polio.
"The HPV vaccine provides us with an incredible opportunity to effectively target and prevent cervical cancer," Perry said in announcing the order.
"If there are diseases in our society that are going to cost us large amounts of money, it just makes good economic sense, not to mention the health and well-being of these individuals to have those vaccines available," he said.
The New Jersey-based drug company could generate billions in sales if Gardasil — at $360 for the three-shot regimen — were made mandatory across the country. Most insurance companies now cover the vaccine, which has been shown to have no serious side effects.