|5:35 PM EDT||
Steven Chabot, R-OH 1st
Mr. CHABOT. Mr. Chairman, the rationale behind this amendment is simple: hardworking taxpayers should not have to subsidize the world's most successful companies and trade groups for their business and advertising overseas, yet that's exactly what the Market Access Program does. Every year, the Federal Government takes millions from taxpayers and hands it to multimillion-dollar corporations. These funds end up financing lavish international travel and marketing expenses for corporations that
could most certainly afford to do it themselves. In my view, this is corporate cronyism for the well-connected, and with a $17 trillion debt, almost, it's time to end this misuse of tax dollars.
Just a few of the more egregious examples of waste include a taxpayer-funded Japanese Tweet While You Eat campaign to promote U.S. beef; an animated series in Spain promoting walnuts that chronicles the adventures of a squirrel named Super Twiggy and his nemesis the Colesterator; educational wine tastings in London, Denmark, Dublin, and Mexico; American whiskey tastings in Hong Kong; an elaborate outdoor dinner party in New Delhi, India, so that food critics could discuss prunes.
The list goes on and on, and the trend is disturbing. Billion-dollar-industries are padding their bottom line with American tax dollars. They ought to do these things, but they ought to do them on their own dime, not on the backs of the American taxpayers.
Take, for example, Blue Diamond Almonds, which despite their billion-dollar year in 2012, still received $3.3 million from the Market Access Program.
Or the U.S. Meat Export Federation which received $19 million from MAP last year, even though the value of pork and beef exports was at the highest level in history.
Or Sunkist Growers, Inc., which recorded its third consecutive billion-dollar year, but still received $2.2 million from American taxpayers.
So we have billion-dollar enterprises and million-dollar recipients of aid from the American taxpayer.
The bottom line is Congress should not spend hard-earned tax dollars this way. Republicans don't believe in it; Democrats don't believe in it. So let's stop doing it. Don't get me wrong, these businesses ought to be doing this. They ought to be advertising their own products, but they shouldn't do it on the backs of the American taxpayers. For the sake of the taxpayers, who are earning the money that we're spending here, I urge passage of this amendment.
I yield such time as he may consume to the gentleman from California (Mr. McClintock).