MURKOWSKI TO MILLER: 'RETURN FARM SUBSIDY MONEY'
Decries Miller's "Truth Deficiencies"; Reminds voters of her 9 votes against farm subsidy programs
Anchorage, AK - Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) today called on Joe Miller, a former Kansas gentleman farmer, to return $13,677 in farm subsidies, including federal statutory interest calculated from 1997, back to the United States Department of Agriculture. The issue stems from Joe Miller's recent acknowledgement to the press of his receipt of 61 payments for farm subsidies from the federal Farms Services Bureau for "sorghum and wheat deficiencies" between 1991 and 1997.
"Today I call on Joe Miller to return his 'unconstitutional' farm subsidy payments back to the U.S. Treasury. I have prepared a pre-postage envelope addressed to the U.S. Department of Agriculture to help expedite Miller's refund to the taxpayer," declared Lisa Murkowski holding the envelope for reporters to see. The Senator called on the refund to be paid for by Joe Miller personally, not from campaign funds.
"For seven years Joe Miller received federal assistance payments for crop deficiencies," Murkowski said. "For seven days Miller stonewalled Alaskans with 'truth deficiencies' before finally being forced to come clean on the personal handouts he received from U.S. taxpayers. I am sure some Alaskans might understand his receipt of such assistance; what they can't understand is why he tried to hide this fact when directly confronted with the question," Murkowski added.
Over a period of several days repeated attempts to pin down Miller on his receipt of farm payments were met with purposeful misdirection from Miller and his campaign. When asked whether he ever received any farm subsidies Miller responded with a very carefully crafted lawyerly response, noting his Alaska "land is not under production, and he's received no federal farm subsidies for it," all the while knowing he had received seven years of taxpayer subsidies for another farm in Kansas from a program not specifically enumerated in the U.S. Constitution.
Murkowski also noted her nine votes in the Senate against farm subsidy programs. "Joe Miller has been hoping for the last several years that people would not find out he lacks the constitutional principles he has recently been espousing. During that same time I have been fighting in the Senate to stop wasteful spending programs, such as the farm subsidy programs," Murkowski said.
Joe Miller has accused Senator Murkowski of crossing party lines to votes against the Republicans in the Senate. Ironically, the 9 votes that Murkowski made in opposition to farm subsidies were ones taken against the Republican position on the Senate floor. "Joe has attacked me for not voting lock step with my Party. These 9 votes against my Party were ones to stop wasteful spending on farm subsidy programs. Would Joe Miller rather have me vote with the Republicans to fund these farm subsidy programs?" Murkowski asked. "I guess the answer is 'yes' because he personally benefited from that program."
"Alaskans don't like it when people say one thing in Alaska and do another in Washington, D.C., or in Kansas for that matter," Murkowski said. "His farm situation in Kansas reminds of the 1977 song, Dust in the Wind, by the group called Kansas, because that what Joe's credibility is turning into...dust in the wind."
Joe criticized Senator Murkowski for "voting against her party 300 times," nine of those votes were against farm subsidies. They include:
· Vote # 151 (June 18, 2008) - voted Nay. Joined 11 other conservative Republicans, in opposing an override of a Presidential veto of the Farm Bill because of subsidies
· Vote # 144 (June 5, 2008) - voted Nay in final passage of the Farm Bill
· Vote # 140 (May 22, 2008) - voted Nay. Joined 10 Republicans in opposition to a Congressional override of a Farm Bill veto because of wasteful subsidies
· Vote # 130 (May 15, 2008) - voted Nay on final passage of the Farm Bill
· Vote # 129 (May 15, 2008) - voted Nay to waive procedural challenges on the Farm Bill
· Vote # 128 (May 15, 2008) - voted Nay to waive a procedural challenge on the Farm Bill
· Vote # 424 (December 13, 2007) - voted Yes with 16 other Republicans on an amendment to limit wasteful subsidies to large agri-businesses
· Vote # 218 (June 20, 2007) - voted Yes to strike an extension of ethanol subsidies
· Vote # 209 (October 9, 2004) - voted Nay on a resolution saying that disaster relief should not come from subsidy cuts. Murkowski felt disaster relief payments should be fully offset by cutting farm subsidy programs.
Paid for by Lisa Murkowski for US Senate • P.O. Box 100847, Anchorage, AK 99510