Meghan Hughes (202) 224-5972 or Kevin Bishop (864) 250-1417
WASHINGTON -- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today made this statement on his opposition to the draft legislation funding the federal government for Fiscal Year 2011. The measure includes a Graham request for $379,000 in funding for the Port of Charleston harbor deepening study to be conducted by the Army Corp of Engineers.
"First, let me say I cannot support the Omnibus spending bill as it increases the size of government when people want to see government become smaller and more efficient. It is full of unnecessary spending which grows the federal government. It also includes more than $1 billion directed toward implementing Obamacare. The nearly 2,000 page, $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill is the result of a dysfunctional Congress and its inability to get our work done in an orderly manner.
"During my time in the Senate, I have worked to ensure the needs of our state are met. I have also tried to work in a cooperative manner with my colleagues. I appreciate both the Republican and Democratic members of the Senate Appropriations Committee and Senate leadership who worked with me on this provision. After my many meetings and discussions with them, I think they now understand and appreciate the tremendous importance of the Port to our state, and ultimately, the nation.
"They know that one of every five jobs in our state is tied directly or indirectly to the Port of Charleston. They know that the deepening of the harbor will be a job creator in the years ahead. They know the study is the first step in what will be a multi-year project costing an estimated $350 million with the real heavy lifting yet to come. I feel confident in saying the future needs of the Port of Charleston are now on their radar screen.
"I will continue to fight for and support the Port of Charleston. But I cannot support this spending bill."