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Location: Washington, DC

CZARS -- (House of Representatives - July 08, 2009)


Mr. KINGSTON. You know, we have all heard about czarist Russia. Over a 300-year period of time, Russia had 18 czars. Now, America has had czars, too--Ronald Reagan had one, George Bush had one, Bill Clinton had three, George W. Bush had four. This Presidency has 27--and maybe even as high as 33, nobody even knows--czars for all kinds of things like compensation, regulatory reform, terrorism, Guantanamo Bay, automobiles.

And who are these people? Well, we don't know, because even though the Constitution calls for the U.S. Senate to approve powerful people in powerful positions--and, indeed, they vote on hundreds of appointees--the czars go around this process. Now, they get paid $172,000 each and they all have staffs. We are spending millions of dollars on people who have not been vetted by the U.S. Senate. We do not know who they are or what they are doing.

Why won't the President use transparency and have these people come before the Senate and talk to them? Why are they so smart, and why do you have to have duplication of already existing Cabinet jobs?


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