CAGW Names Kamala Harris 2018 Porker of the Year | Citizens Against Government Waste

CAGW Names Kamala Harris 2018 Porker of the Year

Porker of the Month

Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) announced the results of its online poll for the 2018 Porker of the Year.  There were five worthy candidates who were guilty of promoting patently flawed policies, defending wasteful boondoggles, and pushing a big-spending agenda. 

After the votes were tallied, the dishonor went to Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), with 38 percent of the vote, a double-digit victory over the runner-up, incoming House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), whose absurd proposal to bring back pork-barrel earmarks earned him 27 percent.

Senator Harris was named August 2018 Porker of the Month for proposing a bill that would subsidize rent with taxpayer dollars.  Her bill would have encouraged the same behaviors that led to the student loan bubble.  A February 2017 study by the New York Federal Reserve found that as students took out larger federally-subsidized loans, colleges and universities hiked tuition, blunting the benefits for students and increasing the burden on taxpayers.  The same would be true in the rental market.  Tenants would be incentivized to rent the most expensive allowable properties and landlords would be able to spike rents without facing a financial downside because taxpayers would foot the increased bill.  Conservative estimates put the price of the subsidy at $76 billion per year, and those costs would surely rise, like other federal programs intended to help the poor.

The Tax Foundation concluded that Sen. Harris’s plan, “would fail to address the root causes of the high cost of housing.  Instead, it would wind up benefiting landlords, not significantly improving the lives of renters, and carrying a hefty price tag.”  University of Georgia economics professor Jeffrey Dorfman wrote, “Instead of the Rent Relief Act, we could call it the Landlord Enrichment and Taxpayer Fleecing Act.”

CAGW President Tom Schatz said, “We would like to thank the taxpayers who voted for all of the ‘worthy’ candidates.  Senator Harris’s proposal is a prime example of the fiscal foolishness that flourishes in Washington, D.C. and rightly earns her the distinction of 2018 Porker of the Year.”

CAGW is the nation's largest nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government.  Porker of the Year is a dubious honor given to a lawmaker, government official, or political candidate who has shown the most blatant disregard for the interests of taxpayers throughout the year.