John McCain Doesn’t Know What He’s Tweeting About


John McCain was on fire on Wednesday. The Senate was set to vote on the Farm Bill, so the Arizona Republican senator decided to tweet out a list of the 10 worst projects being funded the bill, under the hash-tag #FarmBillPork. Here’s number six:

Mac is back, baby!

Some of the projects McCain pokes fun at do seem pretty wasteful. As Politico‘s David Rodgers reports, Nebraska’s two senators wouldn’t offer any explanation for why they included a 31-word passage designed to help the popcorn industry. The Farm Bill is notorious for being larded with counterproductive, often wasteful measures. But feral pig eradication isn’t a pet project—it’s a response to a serious problem with very real economic and environmental consequences.

Feral pigs cause about $400 million in property damage each year in Texas along. The national figure is much higher. Mississippi State’s wild pig information site notes that a “conservative estimate of the cost of wild pig damage to agriculture and the environment in the United States currently stands at $1.5 billion annually.” That’s like three Solyndras! Feral pigs spread diseases, they’re bad for business (especially if you own a farm or a golf course), and they’re bad for just about any species that’s not a feral pig because they’re a non-native invasive species. They’re also pretty big polluters.

Skepticism is a healthy thing when it comes to massive appropriations bills. But McCain doesn’t seem to have any genuine interest in evaluating the merits of a project before he mocks it; he’d rather play to the lowest common denominator by making a joke about pigs. This isn’t the first time he’s done this, either.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

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In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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