In an op-ed published today in The Hill, Sens. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Richard Lugar (R-IN) and Pat Toomey (R-PA), highlighted growing bipartisan support for reforming the outdated U.S. sugar program and urged their congressional colleagues to build on that momentum. They wrote in part:
“Congress talks a lot about saving people money — and now we have a chance to put our money where our mouth is. That’s why we are pushing for bipartisan, commonsense reform to an extravagant sugar price-support program that costs consumers and businesses an estimated $3.5 billion and 20,000 jobs each year.
“Our efforts to reform the sugar program in the Senate garnered record-breaking support and came close to succeeding this summer. Now Congress needs to continue to build on that momentum. In doing so, we would protect consumers, help American companies compete and save taxpayers $72 million over 10 years.
“… The momentum for change is clear. … During Senate debate on the farm bill, we saw strong support for our amendments to reform the sugar program, significantly more than the last time similar legislation was introduced in 2001. We were encouraged by this growing bipartisan support.
“… As we look at ways to help American families and small businesses prosper, no group or program should be immune to change. Even programs with the best intentions can outlive their usefulness. The sugar program certainly has.”
To read the full text of the op-ed, click here.