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Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2007

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. PAUL. Mr. Chairman, my amendment is very simple. It says none of the funds made available in this act may be used to implement or administer a National Animal Identification System. I think at this time one thing that this country doesn't need is another huge bureaucracy tracing and following every animal in the country. That is exactly what this new program will do. It means that each animal will be tagged with a radio frequency ID, all cattle, swine, sheep, goats, horses poultry, bison, deer, elk, lamas and alpacas.

For one, what you own on your farm should be your property, and that information should be private unless there is some type of a subpoena. There is a fourth amendment issue here.

Also, there is the issue of just why this is being done. A lot of people have claimed, and I agree with this, that this is a benefit to the large agribusiness farmers, and it is a great detriment to the small farmers who will be burdened with this great effort to accumulate data which will be of benefit to some private big companies. Actually, the database will be controlled by private companies. It will be said that this is a voluntary program, but it has also been told me by the Agriculture Department that if it isn't 100 percent agreed to by the year 2008, it will become mandatory. So it is a little bit of 1984 newspeak about exactly how voluntary it is.

But we certainly don't need this type of program. We already have plenty of programs that trace and monitor movement. There are health requirements and brands and all the other efforts. This, to me, is a bureaucratic boondoggle that we don't need.

Mr. Chairman, I yield 1 1/2 minutes to the gentleman from Colorado (Mr. Hefley).


Mr. PAUL. Mr. Chairman, I just want to say that if the gentleman from Georgia does not want another huge bureaucracy, he must support my amendment, because that is what he is going to get. It has already been funded. Even though there is pretense that there is a restraint on funding, it has already been funded, so it is in motion.

Mr. Chairman, I yield the balance of my time to the gentleman from Indiana (Mr. Hostettler).


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