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Posted on Tue, May. 04, 2010 11:32 PM

Of the eight people President Barack Obama nominated to the National Council on Disability, only one personally has lived with a disability.

That’s why for some, Ari Ne’eman, diagnosed in his preteen years with Asperger’s syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism, seemed perfect.

Yet he is the only one of the eight not confirmed, surprising those who applauded the pick.

His nomination has been stalled on the Senate floor for six weeks now. Even in a contentious partisan atmosphere, in which at least 80 other presidential choices are on hold, it might seem odd, as Ne’eman would fill a spot on an independent federal agency that makes recommendations to the president and Congress on issues pertaining to people with disabilities.

“Another individual may understand, be empathetic,” said Pat Kemp of Autism Speaks, an organization dedicated to funding research for a cure and prevention of autism. “But when you are inflicted by a disability, that gives you honest perspective. … We think it’s a huge step forward.”

Read in Full:  http://www.kansascity.com/2010/05/04/1925137/man-with-autism-draws-support.html



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