WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) named House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway (R-Texas) its July 2018 Porker of the Month for crafting a Farm Bill that will prove to be an expensive and wasteful disaster for taxpayers.
Chairman Mike Conaway introduced the Agriculture and Nutrition Act (Farm Bill) on April 12, 2018. The bill that passed his Agriculture Committee and then the full House will cost taxpayers $868 billion over the next decade. Instead of reining in bloated subsidy programs and closing loopholes for special interests, the bill doubled down on the costly status quo.
Perhaps most troubling is a provision that would expand the definition of a farmer. Under the House Farm Bill, a farmer’s cousins, nieces, and nephews could receive taxpayer subsidies of up to $125,000 per year as long as they claim to have checked in with the farm’s operations at least once a month. In theory, “a farmer in Nebraska could have a cousin in New York City who would be eligible for $125,000 a year from taxpayers, as long as he or she documented the occasional call.”
The Farm Bill has been high on Chairman Conaway’s priority list for nearly a year. An August 2, 2017 headline in the Texas Tribune read: “U.S. Rep. Mike Conaway staking legacy on passing politically tricky farm bill.” Chairman Conaway may have shepherded the Farm Bill to passage in the House, but his legacy among taxpayers will not be a positive one.
CAGW President Tom Schatz said, “The 2018 Farm Bill falls well short of taxpayers’ expectations and Chairman Conaway shoulders the blame. Instead of making meaningful reforms to corporate welfare subsidy programs, the bill expanded the definition of a farmer and enlarged an already gaping loophole through which tens of billions of taxpayer dollars will be squandered.”
For authoring a Farm Bill that is crony capitalism on steroids, CAGW names Rep. Mike Conaway its July 2018 Porker of the Month.
Citizens Against Government Waste is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government. Porker of the Month is a dubious honor given to lawmakers, government officials, and political candidates who have shown a blatant disregard for the interests of taxpayers.