Wasteful pork spending in the virus aid bill

Taxpayers Association of Oregon


As the trillion dollar coronavirus relief bill has rushed through Congress this week, there have been attempts to stuff wasteful pork politics into the bill. Here is just an example as discovered by Open the Books:

– The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts received $63 million in aid relief.  That was nearly twice as high as what Speaker Nancy Pelosi first requested ($35 million).  The Kennedy Center has total assets of $557 million.  The Kennedy Center defends the grant because they employ thousands of people — but so do most other large businesses that did not receive special treatment.  The Kennedy Center also says they deserve the $63 million grant because they provide “free at-home programming”.   Does America really suffer from not having enough free programing or a lack of things to watch online?

– Public Broadcasting was awarded $75 million.   Just a few years ago Congress was debating eliminating funding altogether.   Sesame Street brings in $121 million in revenue and 4% of that comes from government grants.  Does $121 million Sesame Street really need government subsidies to survive?  Does Sesame street’s $580,000 CEO pay really need a bailout?

Note: The relief bill has moved at record speed and the final officials numbers and inclusions are still being determined and researched. 

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