Ernst's Squeal Award goes to EPA for reckless spending

One of Sen. Joni Ernst's (R-Iowa) top priorities is to find ways to eliminate wasteful spending and inefficiencies throughout the federal government.

"Last December, the Government Accountability Office (the "congressional watchdog" responsible for investigating how the federal government spends taxpayer dollars) issued a report that found the Environmental Protection Agency's social media campaign to promote its flawed expansion of the Waters of the U.S. Rule (WOTUS) broke the law," Ernst said.

"The EPA was on shaky legal ground when it decided to use taxpayer dollars to lobby the American public to support its harmful WOTUS rule," she continued. "The agency used election-style tactics in an effort to gain support for this misguided rule, and the GAO called the EPA out for its egregious, and illegal actions."

Ernst called the ill-conceived WOTUS rule "nothing more than a blatant power grab by an agency that is committed to expanding its reach over Iowa."

Now, Ernst said, at the request of Senate Budget Chairman Mike Enzi, a news GAO report uncovered that



increased its public relations staff by

16% in less than 10 years, to a total of 142 employees solely dedicated to pushing the EPA's message.

"With our national debt exceeding $19 trillion,

taxpayers should not be forced to bankroll an illegal public relations campaign for the EPA's reckless and out of touch agenda that promotes harmful regulations," Ernst said. She is working to scrap the rule entirely.