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Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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I don't really know. I think he's a person like many successful politicians who has enormous good health and energy and sickness or disabilities are just far away from his concern. Besides that, I think he's lived in the atmosphere that the Rockefeller Foundation and the Rockefeller Institute are spending substantial money to solve medical problems, have done it, and this is all being taken care of by other people and it is something he doesn't need to concern himself with.

Well, this is more or less what I felt his attitude was when he was in HEW and I urged more funds. He got to have a healthy respect for me while he was at HEW because although he and Mrs. Hobby protested that they didn't need more funds for medical research and education, in spite of the best they could do against it, their budget increased as a result of the activities of the Democratic majorities in both Houses and our urging them to increase the funds. By “our” I mean all my friends, including Sidney Farber of Childrens Hospital in Boston and the Childrens Cancer Research Foundation and Dr. Debakey, the great surgeon from Baylor University in Houston, and many others. And, of course, I did a great deal of private lobbying with fiends in both Houses.


And this impressed a man like that.


So, Nelson couldn't believe that anything like this--that his views could be reversed while he was presumably an official in the department.

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