Blackburn Votes Against More Wasteful Spending

Vital Farm Bill Soured By Earmarks And Budget Gimmicks

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Washington, May 14, 2008 | Claude Chafin (202-225-1112) | comments
Rep. Marsha Blackburn (TN-7) cast her vote against a farm bill that adds hundreds of billions to the federal deficit, gives tax breaks and earmarks to special interests, and failed to reform agricultural subsidies.
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Rep. Marsha Blackburn (TN-7) cast her vote against a farm bill that adds hundreds of billions to the federal deficit, gives tax breaks and earmarks to special interests, and failed to reform agricultural subsidies.

“Tennessee’s farmers know they can count on me; and I know that they need a real farm bill. They need a farm bill that addresses their needs, not a special-interest give away that further expands the federal deficit. Small working farms in Tennessee deserve federal resources; millionaires can do all right on their own. I hope that when the President vetoes this legislation, the Speaker will take farmers’ needs seriously and send a clean farm bill to the floor.”

More on what is wrong with the Farm Bill:

  • Continues to Subsidize Millionaire Farmers Without Reforming the System: The Farm Bill continues to subsidize household incomes of $2.5 million or more, but fails to adopt meaningful reforms to set the subsidy program on a path to fiscal sanity.
  • Will Significantly Increase The Deficit: The bill waves PayGo budget restrictions and is not fully paid for. As a result, the legislation will immediately add to the federal deficit by increasing new spending by $23 billion, $80.1 billion in increased mandatory spending over 10 years, and $658 billion in total mandatory spending over 10 years.
  • $1.4 Billion in Special Interest Tax Breaks And Pork Barrel Spending: The Farm Bill contains a $250 million project for land in Montana earmarked for one organization, $170 million for the salmon industry in San Francisco, and an earmark that directs the USDA to sell land to a private ski resort.
  • Sugar-Coating The Problems In The U.S. Sugar Program: Consumers already facing a turbulent commodity industry caused by skyrocketing prices in grocery stores will suffer a further indignity while the U.S. sugar industry receives an earmarked loan rate, and a new sugar-to-ethanol mandate that will increase sugar costs for everyone else. This increased rate may lead to job losses in Tennessee when home-based companies are forced to outsource labor abroad.
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