Joni Ernst Reintroduces Swamp Act to Move Federal Agencies Out of Swamp

WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 16: Senator Joni Ernst (R-ID) speaks to the media during a press conference following the Senate Republican Leadership lunches on July 16, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Pete Marovich/Getty Images)
Pete Marovich/Getty Images

Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) reintroduced legislation Thursday that would move federal agencies out of the Washington, DC, swamp so federal bureaucrats can focus on helping the Americans they serve.

Sen. Ernst reintroduced her Strategic Withdrawal of Agencies for Meaningful Placement (SWAMP) Act to move agency headquarters over geographically diverse areas of the nation so they focus on helping the Americans most impacted by their decisions. Nearly all federal agencies remain headquartered in or around Washington, DC.

“Washington-based federal agencies and bureaucrats make important decisions that impact the lives of Iowans, and all Americans. Yet, how can these rule makers fully consider and understand the effects of their decisions when those who are most impacted by their rules and regulations are out-of-sight and out-of-mind? We need to fix that,” Ernst said in a statement Thursday.

Ernst’s legislation arises as the Donald Trump administration continues to make strides towards moving departments within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Department of Interior (DOI) outside of the D.C. beltway and closer to the American people.

Washington, DC, bureaucrats have often pushed rules with little thought to how it might impact the average American.

For instance, the Obama Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) pushed the 2015 Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule that would regulate every waterway and every pond and lake in America. Had the bureaucrats gained a greater knowledge of the needs of the average American, they might not have proposed the rule, knowing the impact it would have on the Americans in the heartland.

“Instead of housing federal agencies in swampy D.C., let’s move them outside the Beltway and closer to the folks who know the needs of their states, farms, and businesses best,” Ernst continued. “And in the process, we will see more job creation and greater opportunities for communities across the country—not just in D.C.”

Sen. Ernst first teased in an interview with Breitbart News in July that she will reintroduce her SWAMP Act, noting that many D.C. federal bureaucrats are “so set on D.C. area and they’re not necessarily mission-focused, they’re swamp-focused.”

Ernst said, “If they want to be in an area where they’re supporting farmers and agriculture, they should be out in farm” land, adding that she does not “know of many active farmers here in Washington, DC.”

Sean Moran is a congressional reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.

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