- Senator Lautenberg - Big Tea Party Buff -
September 4, 2008
Lawrenceville, NJ - U.S. Senate candidate Dick Zimmer's "Waste of the Week" campaign this week targets Senator Frank Lautenberg's support of federal funding for the Sparta Teapot Museum in North Carolina.
The Sparta Teapot Museum was the vision of Sunny and Gloria Kamm who wanted to publicly display their teapot collection. The idea was that a teapot museum would increase tourism to the area, but even the Sparta town manager conceded that the project was "speculative." The museum is 90 minutes from the nearest airport.
In 2006, the Sparta Teapot Museum received two separate $250,000 earmarks from the transportation appropriations bill. Senator Frank Lautenberg supported these earmarks by agreeing to the conference report by unanimous consent. (November 21, 2005)
In 2007, CBS Evening News aired a segment on the Sparta Teapot Museum asking the question, "Why should your federal tax dollars be used for this local project?" To view the CBS News Eye On Your Money segment "Pouring Pork From a Teapot," click here.
Zimmer issued the following statement:
"Just because teapots have a cute song, doesn't mean they deserve a museum at the taxpayer's expense.
"Instead of properly spending federal tax dollars to address national needs such as high energy prices, Senator Lautenberg is channeling funds to help other lawmakers use the pork-barrel game to get reelected. Until we put a stop to wasteful spending by Washington, we will continue to see more teapot museums and other dubious projects sprout up across the nation.
"It is time for a change from the pork-barrel politics of the past. New Jersey taxpayers deserve a Senator who will not squander their tax dollars to house someone's teapot collection or to subsidize someone's reelection campaign, but who will instead put the concerns of New Jersey taxpayers first."
Zimmer's "Waste of the Week" campaign is designed to highlight Senator Frank Lautenberg's record of supporting wasteful spending and pork-barrel politics at the expense of New Jersey taxpayers. Previous Wastes of the Week were the $300 billion Farm Bill, the $389 million Bridge to Nowhere in Alaska, a $225,000 pamphlet on beaver damage and various Monuments to Me spending projects.