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Rick Santorum Received Beer Money, Pushed For Laws To Help Beer Industry

The Huffington Post   First Posted: 02/21/2012 12:07 pm Updated: 02/21/2012 3:16 pm

During his 12 years in Congress, Rick Santorum was one of the beer industry's largest benefactors.

Mother Jones reported Tuesday on the long-term relationship and what Big Beer got for its money:

"The name of the game is to deflect attention at all costs from the fact that really we should be raising beer taxes and the most brilliant way to do that was devised by the beer industry by creating this 'roll back the beer tax' campaign," explains Michele Simon, president of the industry watchdog Eat Drink Politics. Santorum took up the industry's agenda in Congress. "He was just parroting what the beer industry had told him to say," Simon says.

In some cases, almost literally. Santorum's floor speeches and public statements in support of his beer tax repeal measures read like an almost verbatim rehash of industry talking points.

Here's a statement from the Anheuser-Busch-backed website, RollBackTheBeerTax.org: "In 1990, Congress raised taxes on luxury items like expensive cars, fur coats, jewelry, yachts, and private airplanes and doubled Federal excise taxes on beer. Though most of the luxury taxes were repealed in 1993, the beer tax remains in place."

Here's Santorum in a 1998 floor speech introducing his beer tax repeal bill: "The federal excise tax on beer was doubled as part of the 1991 Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act…While taxes on furs, jewelry, and yachts were repealed through subsequent legislation, the federal beer tax remains in place with continued and far reaching negative effects."

Click here to read the whole article.

Earlier on HuffPost:

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