NRSC: “New Government Report: Melancon’s Failed Stimulus Provides Monkeys With Cocaine While Failing To Create Much-Needed Jobs”

August 5, 2010

WASHINGTON – A new government report revealed today that U.S. Representative Charlie Melancon’s (D-LA) $787 stimulus law led to job losses and helped drive our national debt over $13 trillion while paying for non-job related projects like a study to determine the effects of cocaine on monkeys, iPods for high school students, cell phones for smokers trying to quit, and advertising devoted to the promotion of the stimulus bill itself.

As CNBC reports today:

Two Republican senators have conducted an exhaustive survey of the Obama administration’s $787 billion economic stimulus spending and found that some of the spending didn’t create jobs – it actually led to job losses. Call it the federal law of unintended consequences. All in all, Senators Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) scrutinized 100 projects, finding that some eliminated jobs, and others were simply questionable expenditures of money. The report, obtained in advance by CNBC, spotlights everything from federal stimulus money that went to study the effects of cocaine on monkeys to dollars that went to construction projects that blocked access to local businesses – which laid off employees as a result.

Meanwhile, the Chicago Tribune notes that, “Stimulus money is going toward iPods for high school students in Utah, cellphones for smokers trying to quit in Washington and advertising devoted to the promotion of … the stimulus.”

Today’s report underscores the failure of Melancon’s stimulus bill, which he claimed would create much-needed jobs. When Melancon helped ram the stimulus into law in February of 2009, the nation’s unemployment rate was 8.1 percent. Today, America’s unemployment stands at a painful 9.5 percent.

“While Louisianians suffer from high unemployment, Charlie Melancon is in Washington driving up our national debt with spending projects that have failed to create much-needed jobs and killed vulnerable positions thanks to botched stimulus projects,” said National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) spokesman Chris Bond. “As Melancon vies for a promotion in Washington, voters will hold him accountable for his out-of-control spending agenda that funded exotic ant farms, computerized dance programs, and animal drug testing.”

Background Information:

A New Report On The Economic Stimulus Shows That Charlie Melancon’s $787 Billion Government Spending Program Has Led To Job Losses And Lavished Taxpayer Dollars On Outrageous Wasteful Projects. (CNBC, 08/03/10)

According To The Report, Small Businesses Across The Country Experienced A Decrease In Business Due To Stimulus-Funded Road Construction Projects And Other Unintended Consequences.

The Report Also Found That Taxpayer Dollars Are Being Thrown At Dubious, If Not Outrageous, Projects, Including:

* $2 million to capture and study exotic ants

* $71,000 to study how monkeys react under the influence of cocaine

* $750,000 to develop a computerized choreography program that could lead to a YouTube-like “Dance Tube” online application

* $554,000 to replace windows at a Washington visitor center with no plans to reopen the visitor center

* $54 million to develop a building for the Mohegan Tribe in Connecticut that will also serve as a practice facility for the WNBA’s Connecticut Sun women’s professional basketball team

* $300,000 to study whether Integral Yoga can be an effective method to reduce hot flashes in menopausal women

* $194,000 to study people’s perceptions of federal stimulus spending. (Sens. Tom Coburn and John McCain, “Summertime Blues: 100 Stimulus Projects That Give Taxpayers The Blues,” 8/10)

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