Call for Ban on Taxpayer-Funded ‘Vanity’ Portraits of Bureaucrats

By Alan Farnham

Jan 22, 2014 10:32am
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Rep. Bill Cassidy (Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

He’s hopping mad. U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy, a Republican from Baton Rouge, La., is angrier than Vincent Van Gogh with his ear cut off.

“This is a waste of money,” Cassidy said in a recent statement about his EGO (Eliminating Government-Funded Oil-Paintings) Act that found its way into the omnibus spending bill.

The EGO Act would prohibit taxpayer dollars from being used to pay for commemorative oil portraits of  the president, vice president, cabinet members, members of Congress and various administrative officials.

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Ed Shafer, the 29th US Secretary of Agriculture, is seen at the unveiling of his official portrait (Credit: Obtained by ABC News)

“Can you believe taxpayers paid $40,000 for a commemorative portrait of EPA administrator Lisa Jackson, and over $20,000 for a 3-by-4 portrait of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack?” Cassidy said in his statement.

 Read More: $38,350 of Taxpayer Money Spent on Former EPA Administrator’s Oil Portrait

“At a time of trillion-dollar deficits, these portraits are a ridiculous and unnecessary luxury. Americans have been complaining about this practice for decades, and it’s time we finally do something about it. As Americans tighten their budgets and cut excess, their government should do the same. Lisa Jackson can borrow my camera for free.”


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