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Mr. McCONNELL. Madam President, yesterday morning I came to the floor to call attention to a quiet and costly PR campaign that President Obama is mounting on the taxpayers' dime. While the President and his surrogates spend most of their time deflecting attention from his record, he has Washington bureaucrats working overtime to try to put on a good face.
I mentioned yesterday the administration is spending yet another $20 million in taxpayer money to promote a health care bill that most Americans would like to see repealed. Let me repeat that--$20 million to promote a health care bill that most Americans would like to see repealed.
There is more. There is a pattern that I, and I am sure many other Americans, find pretty outrageous at a time of trillion-dollar deficits and a near $16 trillion debt. The administration also spent more than $25 million in stimulus funds on grants to public relations firms--PR firms--ostensibly to do public relations related to promoting the stimulus. It spent nearly $20 million on mailings to seniors to tout ObamaCare--a mailer, by the way, that the Government Accountability Office found overstated the law's benefits.
Millions of taxpayer funds were spent on postcards that promote ObamaCare's small business tax credit--a credit the GAO said was ineffective and infrequently used. These are just a few of the ways the administration is quietly promoting its own fatal policies; how it is trying to change people's minds about the President's policies with their own money, and using our tax money to try to promote the President's policies. The campaign is one thing, but using our tax money to promote the President's policies is outrageous.
There is a larger issue than the fact that the President is quietly marketing policies with taxpayer dollars that he is clearly afraid to talk about in public. That is bad enough, but the larger point is the fact that we have a nearly $16 trillion debt, the largest tax hike in history right around the corner, chronic unemployment, and sky-high gas prices, and the President thinks it is a good idea to spend $20 million to promote ObamaCare. We don't have the money to begin with, and he is spending it to market his policies.
The President needs to face the facts. Americans do not want him spending their hard-earned money trying to spin policies they don't like. How about setting some priorities first? How about working with us to lower the deficit and the debt? How about working with us to fund things we actually need? We are more than ready to work with the President, as I said time and time again over the past few years, but he needs to set some priorities and lead.
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