This week, Senator John McCain will offer an amendment to overturn the ban on the importation of prescription drugs, which has been in place for the past 25 years. The idea has intuitive appeal: American companies do much of the research and development of new drugs, at astonishing costs, then consumers in other countries are able to purchase those drugs at lower prices than we can here. Why should Americans have to pay more for these drugs than people in other countries? The short answer is that we have to unless we want pharmaceutical innovation to grind to a halt.
Read the rest at the Daily Caller.
We were happy to sign onto a group letter organized by our friends at the Taxpayer Protection Alliance that urges Congress to impose stricter oversight on the broadband stimulus grants under the Farm Bill. Billion sof taxpayer dollars are being doled out not to provide service in areas with no commerical providers, but to directly compete with companies that have invested their own, private funds in building networks. That's wrong. We support ending the program entirely, as the group letter urges, but at the very least stricter controls are needed to ensure that the subsidies are used only in unserved areas.
The interest rate on federal Stafford Loans is a phony political issue. Yet the legislation proposed in Congress to address this non-issue is still hugely consequential, because the Republican version would end a particularly destructive big government spending program and the Democratic alternative would raise taxes on small businesses. It's a fight that epitomizes the choice voters will face when they head to the polls this fall.
The interest rate on federal Stafford Loans is a phony political issue. The 6.8 percent interest rate was slashed — at taxpayer expense — to 3.4 percent last year. Now Obama and Democrats in Congress are acting as if the rate returning to its usual level is an economic catastrophe for students. It isn't. We're talking about a difference of $6 per month on new loans. Existing loans are unaffected. The student debt problem is real, but the Stafford Loan interest rate issue is not.
Yet the legislation proposed in Congress to address this non-issue is still hugely consequential, because the Republican version would end a particularly destructive big government spending program and the Democratic alternative would raise taxes on small businesses. It's a fight that epitomizes the choice voters will face when they head to the polls this fall.
The House has already passed legislation, H R 4628, that extends the current Stafford Loan interest rate for another year, averting that $6 per month disaster that Obama has been focusing on out on the stump. The bill also does something much more significant: it repeals the so-called Prevention Fund, a multi-billion-dollar slush fund created by Obama's stimulus bill and then expanded and funded even more lavishly — and automatically, without annual appropriations—by the president's health care law.
The Prevention Fund is the most egregious type of federal spending because it uses our federal tax dollars to raise our taxes and limit our freedoms at the state and local levels. Specifically, it provides taxpayer-funded grants for television advertising, lobbying campaigns, and other activities aimed at raising taxes on soft drinks, imposing zoning restrictions on fast food restaurants, imposing smoking bans, and other such nanny-state favorites.
In Philadelphia, the city spent millions of federal taxpayer dollars on advertising to promote a tax hike on soft drinks. The tax was defeated by a remarkable coalition of tea party and union activists, but Mayor Nutter has vowed to continue to pursue it. And why not, with federal taxpayers picking up the tab?
In California, federal taxpayers paid for an effort that resulted in a ban on fast food restaurants in West Adams-Baldwin Hills-Lemert, South Los Angeles, and Southeast Los Angeles. That's right; a state with 11 percent unemployment is using taxpayer dollars to intentionally prevent restaurants from opening that could employ thousands.
In New York, Mayor Bloomberg — enemy of trans fats, sugar, salt, and pretty much anything else...
AC President Phil Kerpen released the following statement on the failure of Obama's 2013 budget proposal:
President Obama has brought Democrats and Republicans together -- in opposition to his unserious, reckless budget, which was rejected 0-99 in the Senate today after failing 0-414 in the House. Call him President Zero.
Federal spending is spiraling out of control, yet Democrats in the Senate continue to refuse to propose a budget or support their president's budget. The American people deserve better.