Mr. FLAKE. Mr. Chairman, before I address this amendment, let me simply say that I spoke earlier today with Representative Cuellar. He would have liked to be here to offer a defense of the last earmark, the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training program. He offered a spirited defense to me today. I still don't happen to agree with him about the amendment, but I know he would have liked to be here to offer that. And I have enjoyed the opportunity to hear about these amendments
and to hear them defended today as Members have known that they are going to be challenged on the floor, and that is what this process is all about.
Mr. Chairman, this amendment would prohibit any funds from the Leonard Wood Institute at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. As many of you know, Major General Wood led the Rough Riders in the Spanish-American war. The Leonard Wood Institute develops, promotes, and manages worldwide collaborations that are related to the Department of Defense.
I am all for seeing the Missouri business sector grow as I would other States' business sectors as well, particularly Arizona. But it seems to me that American taxpayers are being [Page: H4309]
asked to spend Federal defense dollars on promoting Missouri businesses rather than on the war on terror. Again, we are picking winners and losers here. I know that there are institutions in Arizona, business sectors everywhere else, that would like to get this kind of funding,
$20 million, in the defense bill.
So why are we choosing one State? Why are we picking the businesses of that one State as the winners here?
I would ask the chairman of the subcommittee or the sponsor of the amendment to explain to the taxpayers and every other State outside of Missouri why we should support this earmark. Frankly, dollars in the defense bill should go to the war on terror. They ought to go to the troops. They ought to go for body armor. They ought to go for vehicles, for ammunition, for everything else we spend on defense. I do not believe they ought to go to support businesses that are simply looking for defense
contracts or looking to promote business in one particular State.