WASHINGTON – The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, where U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill serves as the top-ranking Democrat, this week unanimously passed a bipartisan bill that protects taxpayer dollars from being used for lawmakers’ portraits, the Eliminating Government-Funded Oil-Painting (EGO) Act.
“Government-funded portraits are Exhibit A of wasteful spending in Washington—it’s got to go now,” said McCaskill, former Missouri State Auditor. “Stroking the egos of government officials is the last thing taxpayer dollars should be going to.”
Introduced along with Republican Senators Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, and Deb Fischer of Nebraska in January, the bipartisan bill bans government funding of portraits that can often cost $20,000-$40,000.
Since her time as Missouri State Auditor, McCaskill has been a leading voice in Missouri and Washington for cutting wasteful government spending. She’s joined with Democrats and Republicans to introduce legislation that would save millions of dollars. For example, she teamed up with a bipartisan group of lawmakers to introduce the Stopping Improper Payments to Deceased People Act, which would improve the Social Security Administration’s data so that it does not continue to send Social Security checks to people who are deceased. She supports a Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and in 2011, McCaskill’s proposal with former Republican Senator and now Attorney General Jeff Sessions to cap federal spending became law as part of the Budge Control Act. During her first term in the Senate, McCaskill waged a successful six-year effort to crack down on waste, fraud, and abuse in wartime contracting.