Representative Steve King of Iowa yesterday introduced a bill in the House aimed at ending the Pigford settlements.
If you recall, Pigford has been called “the biggest ripoff this country has ever known” by a black farmer whistleblower. The government has been paying billions in reparations to black farmers who were once discriminated against. Fine. However, the system has been abused, going from a few thousand farmers to tens of thousands who never got closer to a farm than the potted plant in their apartment.
According to the law, it was not necessary to offer any proof that you ever had a farm or were a farmer. Money was freely doled out.
One of the most blatant abusers has been Shirley Sherrod, formerly of the Agriculture Department. She and her husband received $13 million for their decade long defunct communal farm. Ms. Sherrod came to attention when Andrew Breitbart had a clip of her admitting that she did not treat white farmers as well as blacks.
Here is Michele Bachmann giving a brief rundown of Pigford.
Anyhow, King’s bill failed. Every Democrat voted against it. Unfortunately, they were joined by 78 Republicans. Blackburn, Fincher and Nunelee voted with King.
However, Allen West of Florida and Darrell Issa of California voted against it, too.
This is particularly alarming not just because they are Republicans, but because Issa is the chairman of the House Government Affairs and Oversight Committee. He is the one to start an investigation into this fraud. He can be reached at 202-225-3906 if you want to expression your disappointment at his vote.