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In January 2011, Farenthold claimed that 70 percent of workers would lose their own health care because of the

2010 health care law. “Despite claims that you can 'keep the health care plan you like,' the Obama Administration has predicted that as many as 7 out of 10 Americans with employer-provided health coverage could lose their current health plan,” he said. [PolitiFact, 2/1/11]............15

Budget Issues
Could Have Helped Country Avoid Credit Downgrade In 2011, the Corpus Christi Caller-Times editorial board wrote that Farenthold could have helped avoid a credit downgrade by compromising on the debt ceiling earlier. “Had Farenthold and other far-right Tea Party-backed Republicans who voted for the bill relented sooner, they might have helped the country avoid a downgrade of its credit rating along with saving it from default.” [Editorial, Corpus Christi CallerTimes, 8/12/11]

S&P Senior Director Said Lawmakers Skepticism about Consequences of Credit Default Contributed To Downgrade. A Standard & Poor’s director said that one of the reasons the United States lost its triple-A credit rating was that several lawmakers expressed skepticism about the serious consequences of a credit default. S&P senior director Joydeep Mukherji said the stability and effectiveness of American political institutions were undermined by the fact that “people in the political arena were even talking about a potential default.” Mukherji went on to say that the slow response to the potential crisis by the nation’s leaders contributed to the downgrade.
[Politico, 8/11/11]

Farenthold Said S.&P. Report Could Have a Beneficial Effect

In 2011, Farenthold said the S.&P. report could have a beneficial effect. “Anything that encourages the new committee to get the job done and get us back on a rational fiscal path is a good thing,” Farenthold said. [New York Times, 8/7/11] Said President Used Scare Tactics on Paying Social Security in Debt Ceiling Negotiations In 2011, during debt ceiling negotiations Farenthold said the President was using scare tactics on what would occur if the debt ceiling was reached. “There’s money in the Social Security trust fund to pay it,” Farenthold said. “If we don’t pass something over the next couple of days, it’s the president who decides who gets paid and who doesn’t get paid. So if the checks don’t come, it’s his fault. His choice.” He said he would vote for Speaker of the House John Boehner’s revised Budget Control Act. [Corpus Christi Caller
Times, 7/29/11]

Opposed Raising Debt Ceiling In a 2011 press release Farenthold opposed raising the debt ceiling. In the release Farenthold said, “America is over $14 trillion dollars in debt. Over 40 cents on every dollar is borrowed, and much of that is from China. In a time of runaway government spending, I cannot justify raising the debt ceiling with no plan to stop the spending spree. It is irresponsible to pass along any more debt to our children and grandchildren. Like the rest of America, the government needs to tighten its belt and work within its means.” [Rep. Farenthold, press release, 5/31/11]
Said He Was Still Making Decision on Raising Debt Ceiling

When Farenthold was asked about his position on raising the debt ceiling he said I want to hear what folks here have to say. He said “I am undecided on this.” And talked about the pros and cons of the issues. He then took a poll and said not many people seemed to support raising the debt ceiling. [YouTube, Town Hall
Meeting, Part 3, 00.27, 4/26/11] Said He was Proud of What He Accomplished in DC Cutting Budget

In 2011, Farenthold held a listening session with he said he was proud of what he accomplished in the House. “When I moved to Washington, D.C.,” he said, “it was whether or not there was a problem with spending and whether or not to cut something. Now we’re talking about how much to cut. That’s a huge step in changing the thinking in Washington.” [Brownsville Herald, 4/26/11] On Republican Budget: “Please don’t try to quiz me on the numbers because they get mixed up in my brain.” In an April 2011 town hall meeting, Farenthold said he would talk about the Republican budget. He said “Please don’t try to quiz me on the numbers because they get mixed up in my brain.”
[YouTube, Town Hall Meeting, Part 1, 5:00, 4/26/11]

Said S&P Threatening to Lower Debt Rating was Vindication to Tea Party In 2011, upon hearing news that Standard and Poor’s may lower the U.S. government debt rating of Washington didn’t get spending under control sent stocks stumbling. Farenthold said the S&P was responding to the increasing debt in America. He said the S&P needed a plan in place to get spending
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under control. “It makes it clear that not just the House of Representatives but the financial community understands that we’ve got a spending addiction,” Farenthold said. “This is a shot across the bow saying we need to get our financial house in order.” “It (the S&P report) is a vindication of the Tea Party and its stance that we’re spending too much,” said Republican Blake Farenthold, “The Tea Party isn’t a bunch of radical crazies. They are everyday folks who have enough common sense to realize that we are on an unsustainable path of ‘spend, spend, spend,’” Farenthold told Reuters. [The Monitor, 4/19/11; Reuters, 4/19/11] DCCC Called on Farenthold to Reject Paul Ryan’s Budget Proposal In April 2011, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee called on Farenthold to reject Paul Ryan’s proposal to cut $6.2 billion in federal spending at the expense of Medicare and Medicaid. [CNN,
4/5/11]

Did Not Have a Firm Position On Ryan Budget Bill In April 2011, a spokesman for Farenthold acknowledged that the congressman was “concerned about making sure that cuts [were] in line with his commitment to South Texans” and that he “[did] not have a firm position on the Ryan budget bill.” [Politico, 4/5/11] Called Voting Card the “Most Maxed-Out Credit Card in the Universe” In February 2011, Farenthold joked that his House of Representatives voting card was the “most maxedout credit card in the universe.” [Caller, 2/5/11] Farenthold: $100 Billion in Cuts or Defund Planned Parenthood/Obamacare In April 2011, Farenthold admitted that the continuing resolution to fund the government should include policy changes if the GOP was unable to get all the cuts they wanted. “As Republicans, we promised in the pledge to America to cut $100 billion off of Obama’s plan. If we’re going to come back with less than that, we’ve got to come back with some policy riders to say look, I took less than $100 billion, but I’ve defunded Planned Parenthood or abortions in the District of Columbia. Or I’ve ended Obamacare,” said Farenthold. “I’ve gotta go back home, look people in the eye and say, look, I told you $100 billion, but I went for less, and I’ve got to have a because,” Farenthold said. “Because I don’t want to be perceived as a liar back home.” [TPM, 4/8/11] Said He Was More Worried About Being Called a Liar for Saying He Would Cut Spending Then Shutting the Government Down In 2011, on the potential government shut-down Farenthold said, “The people who seem to be afraid of a government shutdown are worried about getting elected in two more years. I’m worried about having to

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go home and tell the folks I grew up with, and intend to spend the rest of my life with, that I’m a liar.” We can all feel his pain. [Blog, Star-Ledger, 4/3/11] Said He Made a Promise to Cut Budget and It would be Difficult to Back Away from Promise In 2011, with a government shut-down looming Farenthold said it would be difficult to back off cuts to the budget that he promised. “We made a promise,” he said, “It’s going to be difficult to come off of that.” He said he understood the “frustration and impatience” among Tea Party activists, “but I also see the other side of it. Part of negotiation is not saying no, it’s coming up with an alternative plan.” [Bloomberg, 3/31/11] Opposed Raising Federal Debt Ceiling Farenthold voiced his opposition to raising the federal debt ceiling, saying he would not vote to raise the debt ceiling unless major changes are made in the federal spending. [Houston Chronicle, 1/04/11] Top White House Economic Adviser: Not Raising Debt Ceiling Would Be “Catastrophic” During an interview with ABC’s “This Week,” top White House economic advisor Austan Goolsbee said that congressional failure to rise the nation’s debt limit early this year would be “catastrophic.” “The impact on the economy would be catastrophic. I mean, that would be a worse financial economic crisis than anything we saw in 2008…If we get to the point where you’ve damaged the full faith and credit of the United States, that would be the first default in history caused purely by insanity,” he said. [The Hill, 1/02/11] Still on the Fence About Whether to Pay Furloughed Employees In April 2011, Farenthold praised the House for passing a funding bill to keep the government open for another week, however he acknowledged that it still had to be approved by the Senate and President. Farenthold said, “You got the House working real hard to find a way to keep the government operating, but we are one half of one third of the government. We can’t make the Senate or the President do anything.” Farenthold hasn’t decided what to do about furloughed employees. “Do you pay them for not working?” he said. “That doesn’t sound like the fiscally responsible thing to do, but they’ve also planned their lives based on having a job and they have bills to pay too. I haven’t made up my mind on that one yet.” Farenthold was unsure if Members of Congress would still get paid. “They’ll be nobody to write the checks to pay us. Writing our paychecks is probably a non-essential function. ... I suspect we will have to pay ourselves for the time worked during the shutdown.” [Brownsville Herald, 4/8/11] Said He Needed Something to Bring Budget Cuts Home After Failing to Get $100 Billion in Cuts

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In April 2011, Farenthold said he wanted to avoid a government shutdown. He said “we promised $100 billion in cuts when we were elected in the Pledge to America, but you’ve got to give me something to take to the people back home to say I settled for less, but look what I got.” [The Last Word, MSNBC, 4/6/11] Said He Had to Go Home and Look People in the Eye and Claim Victory Either on Spending or a Political Victory
On World News with Diane Sawyer Farenthold said if he couldn’t get all of the spending cuts he wanted on the continuing resolution, he needed a political victory. “That way I can go back, look the folks at home in the eye and say look I couldn’t get $100 billion, but I got you x, y and z.” [ABC News, 4/8/11]

Business and Consumer Issues
Touted La Quinta Channel as Economic Development Project In 2011, Farenthold touted the extension of the La Quinta Channel. He said, “The extension of the La Quinta Channel is a major step towards the improved future development of the Port of Corpus Christi, the fifth largest port in the United States. The La Quinta extension will provide billions in business revenues, create thousands of jobs and contribute to the economic recovery of South Texas.” [Rep.
Farenthold, press release, 9/27/11]

Advocated for Law to Give Cruise Ships More Flexibility In 2011, Farenthold worked to change a law that required cruise ships in the U.S. to stop in a foreign country before stopping at another U.S. port, unless the ship was built in America. The Brownsville Herald reported that the law was from the 1920s. Farenthold introduced House Resolution 2460, the Creating and Restoring U.S. Investment and Stimulating Employment (CRUISE) Act, which would amend U.S. maritime law to allow foreign cruise ships to call at multiple U.S. ports consecutively. He noted that the cruise industry created economic growth in Texas ports. [Brownsville Herald, 8/17/11] Touted Pipe plant as Example of Cooperation Between Government and Industry In 2011, Farenthold touted a $1 billion pipe plant in Tianjin’s Texas Mill Project. The plant had the potential to give the region a $2.7 billion economic boost. Farenthold called it an example of cooperation between government and industry. Other leaders attributed the project’s success to pooling resources for the Coastal Bend’s benefit. [Corpus Christi Caller-Times, 8/27/11] Met with Officials from Tianjin Pipe Co. In 2011, Farenthold met with officials from Tianjin Pipe Co. According to the Corpus Christi Caller Times “Soil testing has begun at the future site of Tianjin Pipe Co.’s Gregory plant, marking another step toward realizing a $1 billion investment that will energize a 252-acre patch of San Patricio County with fringe benefits for the entire region.” The construction on the plant was expected to be operational by 2013. [Corpus Christi Caller Times, 6/22/11] Met with Chamber Members on Federal Demolition of Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce

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In 2011, Farenthold said he would look into the proposed demolition of the Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce. He met with Chamber representatives after it became clear that the chamber’s lease on the building at 1201 N. Shoreline Blvd. would not be renewed due to a proposed parking lot for the federal courthouse next door. [Corpus Christi Caller-Times, 3/28/11] Said Constituents Concerned About Federal Regulations In February 2011, Farenthold said “Everyone wants me to understand how federal regulations affect their lives, either as business owners and operators or private citizens.” [Caller, 2/5/11]

Biographical
Was In Credit Card Debt Between $45,000 and $150,000 In 2011, it was reported that Farenthold had credit debt that exceeded $15,000. The American Independent reported “Based on reports from the D.C. media, it’s hard to judge whether freshman U.S. Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Corpus Christi) is filthy-rich, neck-deep in debt, or maybe a little of both.” Despite pressing for control of the national debt, he was in credit card debt between $45,000 and $150,000. Farenthold loaned his campaign about $138,000 in all, according reports from the Federal Election Commission. About $6,500 of that was in the form of unpaid credit card expenses as of April 15, Farenthold owed more than $125,000 in debts. [American Independent, 6/16/11]

Campaign Finance Issues
Received Money from Boehner, who was a “a Key Fundraiser for GOP” In 2012, it was reported that Farenthold received money from Boehner, who was a “key fundraiser for GOP.” Boehner transferred about $8 million to the NRCC in 2011 and will probably give about that much again this year. He’s given more than $500,000 from his leadership PAC to individual lawmakers, such as freshman GOP Reps. Blake Farenthold, of Texas, and Sean Duffy, of Wisconsin. [Mansfield News
Journal, 1/10/12] Blake Farenthold Congress April Quarterly Report Analysis Total Raised: $168,804.00 Raised from PACs: $97,000.00 Cash on Hand: $163,489.45 Debt: $125,808.23 [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11] Received $2,000 from Air-Travel Related PACs Farenthold received $2,000 from an airline and aircraft manufacturer. The table below summarizes these contributions: Political Action Committee American Airlines PAC Amount $1,000

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Textron Inc, PAC $1,000 Total $2,000 [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11] Received $1,000 from Koch PAC Farenthold received $1,000 from Koch Pac on March 29, 2011. [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11] Failed to Disclose 11 Donor’s Employer and Occupation Who Contributed $8,300 Farenthold failed to disclose the employers and occupations of 11 of his donors, instead claiming he made “best efforts” to obtain the information or requested it. One contribution he claims to have requested information on 9/15/10 despite the contribution being date 3/31/11. The table below summarizes these contributions: Last Name Beer Gandy Garza Garza Obregon Perez Roberts Scanio Loy Parrish Goldston First Name Amount Employer/Occupation Sue $1,000 Best Efforts F.I. $500 Best Efforts David N. $500 Best Efforts Elena $500 Best Efforts Roberto $1,000 best efforts Frank E. $300 Best Efforts Russell $250 Best Efforts Frank $2,500 Best Efforts Steve $500 Physician Bill $1,000 Information requested William $250 Information Requested 09.15.10 Total $8,300 [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11]

Received $33,000 from Leadership PACs Farenthold received 16 contributions from leadership PACs totaling $33,000. The table below summarizes these contributions: Political Action Committee Conaway for Congress Every Republican is Crucial PAC- Cantor Free and Strong America PAC- Romney Invest In A Strong And Secure America - Issa Kevin Mccarthy For Congress Liberty Project- Neugebauer Majority Committee PAC- McCarthy Majority In Congress PAC- McCarthy New PAC- Nunes Texans for Lamar Smith Amount $2,000 $5,000 $2,000 $1,000 $2,000 $1,000 $2,500 $1,000 $2,000 $2,000

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Texans for Lamar Smith $2,000 The Committee for the Preservation of Capitalism- McCrery $2,500 The Freedom Project- Boehner $5,000 Voice for Freedom PAC- Price $1,000 Voice for Freedom PAC- Price $1,000 Westmoreland for Congress $1,000 Total $33,000 [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11] Received $8,000 from Alcohol and Tobacco PACs Farenthold received $8,000 from alcohol and tobacco related PACs. The table below summarizes these contributions: Political Action Committee Amount

Altria Group, Inc. PAC $2,500 American Bankers Association PAC $1,000 National Beer Wholesalers Association Political Action Committee $2,500 National Beer Wholesalers Association Political Action Committee $1,000 Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America PAC $1,000 Total $8,000 [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11] Received $11,000 from Agriculture Related PACs Farenthold received $11,000 from agriculture related PACs. The table below summarizes these contributions: Political Action Committee American Crystal Sugar Company PAC American Sugar Cane League Of Usa Inc Political Action Committee American Sugarbeet Growers Association PAC Committee for Advancement of Cotton Minn-Dak Farmers Cooperative Political Action Committee (MDFPAC) Rio Grande Valley Sugar Growers Inc Political Action Committee Southern Minnesota Beet Sugar Cooperative Political Action Committee Texas Produce Association PAC Total [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11] Farenthold Owed Nearly $114,000 from Campaign Farenthold holds $113,981.58 in personal debt owed by his campaign. [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11] Paid Back Over $24,000. In the first quarter of 2011, Farenthold’s campaign repaid him $24,243.58 for personal loans made to the campaign. [Elect Blake Farenthold, 2011 April Quarterly FEC Report, Filed 04/15/11] Amount $5,000 $1,000 $500 $1,000 $1,000 $1,000 $1,000 $500 $11,000

Began 2011 Campaign Cycle with $157, 000 in Debt

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In February 2011, it was reported that Farenthold was starting the campaign cycle $157,000 in debt from his last campaign. During his last campaign, he was outspent 2 to 1. [Politico, 2/8/11] Received PAC Money from Mitt Romney In 2011 Farenthold received a PAC check from Mitt Romney. [Politico, 3/10/11] Benefitted from House Republican Leadership Fundraising In 2011, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor was scheduled to headline a fundraiser to benefit potentially vulnerable freshmen such as Farenthold. [Politico, 3/30/11] PAC Contributions Increased Dramatically After 2010 Election During the 2010 election, when he ran against 14-term Democratic incumbent Solomon Ortiz, Farenthold received only one PAC contribution of $250 from the Security Service Federal Credit Union. Since the election, Farenthold has received $34,500 from political action committees. [The Wall Street Journal, 2/01/11] Said He Should Thank DCCC for Attack Ads Because They Helped His Fundraising Farenthold said the DCCC ad accusing him of supporting a budget scheme that would cost jobs and reduce research and education programs would backfire. “We're barely into February and they're already running attack ads?” he quipped. “I should thank them — they're actually making it easier for me to raise funds.” [Caller, 2/5/11] Had to Amend Financial Disclosure to Fix Inconsistencies Farenthold reported personal wealth of $14 million, but had to file amendments to his financial disclosure to fix inconsistencies, which potentially shifted his personal value. [Roll Call, 1/25/11]

Choice and Family Planning Issues Crime & Public Safety Issues Economic and Financial Issues
Asked to Designate Parts of Texas’ Highways as Part of Interstate 69 for Economic Development
In May 2011, Farenthold introduced legislation to designate three segments of Texas’ long-distance highways as part of Interstate-69, saying it would encourage economic development. Currently, there are 230 miles of Texas highways built to freeway standard – nearly 25 percent of the Interstate-69 route in Texas, Farenthold said.

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“Close proximity to an interstate is arguably one of the greatest factors to encourage economic development and job creation,” Farenthold said in a statement. “Along with my colleagues in Congress, I have been working with the Alliance for I-69 to ensure that work on the interstate is completed in a timely manner.” [Blog, Houston Chronicle, 5/23/11] Advocated for His Bill to Designate Portions of Road as Interstate for Economic Development

In 2011, Farenthold introduced H.R. 1535 to allow portions of I-69 (US 59, 77, and 281) to be designated

as an interstate. Farenthold touted that the bill would facilitate interstate signage on the multi-state I-69 corridor stretching from Port Huron, Mich., to the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas to encourage economic development. “Close proximity to an interstate is arguably one of the greatest factors to encourage economic development and job creation,” said Farenthold. “Along with my colleagues in Congress, I have been working with the Alliance for I-69 to ensure that work on the interstate is completed in a timely manner.” [Brownsville Herald, 5/21/11] Co-Sponsored Legislation to Allow State to Challenge Regulations Farenthold co-sponsored legislation to “protect 10th Amendment rights by providing special standing for State government officials to challenge proposed regulations.” [Official Press Release, Tom Cole, 1/29/11]

Education Issues
Said There was Too Much Emphasis on Standardized Testing in Texas Schools

Farenthold said there was too much emphasis on standardized testing in Texas schools. “We’re putting way too much emphasis on these standardized tests,” said Farenthold. He said it wasn’t necessary in Texas classrooms especially when state legislators have had such a hard time finding ways to fund school districts, forcing many valley teachers to put in their early retirement rather than risk losing their job. “It’s costing us money,” said Farenthold. [Valley Central, 4/28/11]

Energy Issues
Requested Renewable Energy Money for District In 2011, it was reported that Farenthold made a request to the Obama administration for a renewable energy grant or loan. Republicans criticized the President for Solyndra, a company that went bankrupt after receiving government funding, however, Republicans such as Farenthold requested funding of the same nature. [Politico, 9/22/11] Farenthold Said He Was All for “Green, Brown, Pink, Purple, Yellow” Jobs At a hearing on Green Energy Agenda and Jobs Farenthold said, “I’m all for jobs whether they’re green, brown, pink, purple, yellow. It doesn’t matter. But it seems like, again, and certainly as somebody from Texas this really hits close to home, that we are focusing on green jobs at the expense of the traditional oil and gas industry and traditional petrochemical, coal and the like.” [Committee on Oversight and Government
Reform, 9/23/11]

Touted Three Bills He Co-Sponsored to Lower Gas Prices
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In 2011, Farenthold wrote that there were domestic solutions for lower gas prices. He wrote “High gas prices make life more expensive and most families have no way to cut back on their fuel use.” He claimed Congress was working hard to lower gas prices by increasing the domestic supply. He wrote “The federal government must lease more land, expedite permits and get out of the way so that oil companies and their hard working employees can do their jobs and increase production.”
Farenthold wrote, “Offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico accounts for about 1.25 million barrels of oil a

day, close to 25 percent of domestic crude oil production. To ramp up domestic oil and gas exploration and get people back to work, I co-sponsored and voted for three important bills: H.R. 1229 the ‘Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act’, H.R. 1231 the ‘Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act’ and H.R. 1230 the ‘Restarting American Off-Shore Act Now.’ These bills would end the de facto moratorium on drilling and expedite the backlog of permit applications for companies and operators eager to get back to what they do best — safely drill in the Gulf of Mexico.” [Op-ed, Rep. Farenthold, The Caller, 6/8/11] Advocated for Big Oil and Gas Industries “What we’re working on is trying to get the various regulatory agencies to get out of the way of small entrepreneurs in the oil and gas industry, as well as the big oil and gas companies.” [News 4, 5/2/11] Said Democrats Tried to Take Away Incentives from Oil and Gas Companies Farenthold said it cost him $90 to fill up his gas tank in DC. He asked where the leadership was on gas prices. He said we’re attacking oil and gas companies, trying to take away any incentives they have. He said more drilling in the U.S. was necessary. We need some leadership on the budget and energy policy and we’re not seeing it. [CSPAN, Washington Journal, 16:00, 3/9/11] Said Price of Oil was Due to Regulations and Gulf Drilling Should Be Permitted On the floor in March 2011, Farenthold said the price of oil was too high and permits should be given out for drilling in the gulf. “Since the time President Obama took office in 2009, the price of gasoline has more than doubled, rising from $1.53 a gallon to $3.52. America has become more dependent on foreign oil, undermining our national security while forcing hardworking Americans to endure budget-busting gasoline prices. When you fill up your car, it’s not the oil companies you should be blaming; it’s the White House. Excessive government regulation, the fact that offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico is all but shut down, and the attempt to end the tax incentives for oil exploration are all factors. The culture of ‘‘no’’ from the executive branch is killing us.” “Add to that the lack of any action in light of the deteriorating situation in the Middle East, Egypt, and Libya, in particular, and we have a failure of leadership at the top of this country. Energy is key to our economy. Scores of jobs rely on it. And $3.50 gasoline is unacceptable. I call on the President to act today. Call off the EPA. Issue those leases and permits in the gulf. Open America’s land for drilling. And quit demonizing the oil and gas industry.” [Farenthold Floor Remarks, 3/15/11] Defended Tax Breaks for Big Oil

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In a response to the State of the Union, Rep. Farenthold attacked President Obama’s proposal to eliminate oil industry subsidies to pay for and encourage clean energy research and development. “I have serious concerns that the president’s energy proposed policies will hurt Texans,” he said in a statement. “Eliminating exploration and drilling credits combined with increased regulation of offshore drilling will cost jobs and drive gasoline prices up.” [Brownsville Herald, 1/26/11] Farenthold responded to President Obama’s State of the Union by saying that he was concerned about his energy policy “I have serious concerns that the President's energy proposed policies will hurt Texans. Eliminating exploration and drilling credits combined with increased regulation of offshore drilling will cost jobs and drive gasoline prices up.” [Congressional Documents and Publications,
1/26/11]

Environmental Issues
Speed Limit Increase Amendment Had Turtle Conservationists Worried In 2011, Farenthold attached an amendment to increase the speed limit on an island that had locals worried about turtles. Farenthold attached an amendment to House Bill HR 2584 to raise the speed limit to 25 mph for part of the year at the Padre Island National Seashore. Sea Turtle Inc. released 3,104 sea turtle hatchlings, however, officials worried that if the speed limit at Padre Island National Seashore was raised the turtle population would go down. [Monitor, 8/6/11] Advocated for Corporations to Police Own Air Quality In 2011, Farenthold said corporations should be free to police air quality. He said the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency created regulations that hurt Texas. “There are so many regulations,” he said. “We need to find a way to start reigning in the regulations and changing the culture of government agencies from ‘no’ to ‘yes.’ “ The Caller reported “He said corporations should be free to police air quality.” Farenthold said, “Most corporations want to control emissions and be good corporate citizens regardless of the EPA.” [Caller, 3/26/11] Voted Twice to Limit Federal Oversight of Environmental Issues In 2011, Farenthold voted twice to limit federal agency oversight in environmental and communication issues. He voted for the Republican-backed Energy Tax Prevention Act and House Joint Resolution 37.
[Caller.com, 4/14/11]

Voted for a Bill That Limited Regulation of Pesticide Use Near Navigable Waters In 2011, Farenthold voted in the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee for a bill that would limit the expansion of the regulation of the use of pesticides in or near navigable waters, as required by a federal court ruling.
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The bill would amend the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) to prohibit states or the EPA from requiring a permit for the use, in or near navigable waters, of pesticides that are registered under the law. The bill also would amend the Clean Water Act to prohibit states or the EPA from requiring a permit for the use, in or near navigable waters, of pesticides that are registered under FIFRA. The bill would allow exceptions for pesticides used in violation of the water quality protection provision of FIFRA, regulated stormwater and industrial discharges, and discharges related to the normal operation of a vessel. The bill passed out of committee 46-8. Note: 13 Democrats voted for the legislation. [CQ Committee Hearings, 3/16/11;
HR 872, 3/16/11]

Ethics Issues
Said Bills Should Not Have Unrelated Issues In Them Farenthold said “I think every bill deserves a straight up or down vote without a bunch of other stuff on it,” “But do you start packing stuff on a bill to get it passed? Where do you strike that balance? When do you vote for a bill with something on it you don't like?” [Caller, 2/5/11]

Foreign Policy Issues – Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, North Korea
Advocated for Relying on Commanders on Withdrawal from Afghanistan In 2011, Farenthold said that he thought the President should rely on the military commanders in Afghanistan to determine the correct amount of troops to withdrawal from Afghanistan. Farenthold said “Like many Americans, I have concerns that our troops are fighting on too many fronts . . . is essential to find a balance between strengthening our national security interests and bringing our troops home.” [The Monitor, 6/23/11] Said the U.S. Should Take the Lead on Libya In March 2011, Farenthold said he favored U.S. intervention in Libya. He said “It’s never too late to try and go in and do some good.” He went on to say, “We should have taken the lead on it, but having the broad global support for our actions is always a good thing, and I’m glad the U.N. saw it our way,” he said. “It’s good to see (Obama) is engaged on the world scene.” Farenthold said the crisis in Libya was tied to fuel prices. “Getting the situation in Libya under control is critical to getting fuel prices under control in the U.S.,” he said. [The Monitor, 3/18/11]

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Said He was Learning About Iraq; Suggested America Should Stay Longer In a March 2011, hearing on Iraq Farenthold said “And as a new member of this committee and not an expert in foreign affairs or the situation and never having been to Iraq, I’m troubled by what I’m hearing here. My impression of Iraq comes from what I see on television and read in the newspapers, which might in and of itself be a mistake.” He went on to ask if America should stay longer saying “Has anybody in the Obama administration or the DOD talked to the Iraqi government and said, ‘Hey, you think maybe it might be a good idea for us to stay a little bit longer until this is more stable?’” [Hearing On the State Department Role and Use of Contractors in
Iraq, 3/3/11]

Said Iraq was Shining Example of Bush Administration Success; But Said They Couldn’t Provide Groceries for Us In a March 2011 hearing, the strategic importance of Iraq was highlighted with upheaval in the Middle East. Farenthold said, “I’m excited that we’ve achieved the success, and I think the Bush administration has -- Iraq being a shining example. But if they can’t provide even groceries for us, I’m not sure we’re there yet.” [Hearing On the State Department Role and Use of Contractors in Iraq, 3/3/11]

Gay and Lesbian Issues
Said President Obama’s Decision Not to Defend Defense of Marriage was “Dangerous” In a March 2011 Farenthold said he disagreed with the Obama administration’s decision against defending the Defense of Marriage Act. He said, “This is an express violation of the separation of powers principle found in the Constitution, and it presents a dangerous precedent for future administrations to follow,” he added. “This is not a gay-rights issue, this is a separation-of-powers issue.” [The Hill, 3/3/11]

Gun Issues Health Care Issues
Said Massive Federalization of Health Care Wasn’t the Answer In 2011, Farenthold held a listening session and addressed healthcare reform. “We in the House of Representatives voted to repeal it and start over again. There’s no question we’ve got a problem with getting health care to the people we need to get healthcare to, but a massive federalization of the program, I don’t think is the answer.” [Brownsville Herald, 4/26/11] Believed 70 Percent of Workers Would Lose Health Care Plan Because of Health Care Law

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In January 2011, Farenthold claimed that 70 percent of workers would lose their own health care because of the 2010 health care law. “Despite claims that you can 'keep the health care plan you like,' the Obama Administration has predicted that as many as 7 out of 10 Americans with employerprovided health coverage could lose their current health plan,” he said. [PolitiFact, 2/1/11] PolitiFact: Farenthold’s Claim that 70% of Workers Could Lose their Plan was False PolitiFact.com rated Farenthold’s claim that, “as many as 7 out of 10 Americans with employer-provided health coverage could lose their current health plan,” false. Farenthold used the highest possible estimate for the percentage of healthcare plans that will have lost their grandfather status by 2013 but did not qualify that loss of grandfather status does not necessarily mean that people would lose their current plans. [PolitiFact.com, 1/23/11]
Had Lack of Context in Talking Point About Keeping Health Care Coverage

In an op-ed Farenthold wrote “Despite claims that you can ‘keep the health care plan you like,’ the Obama administration has predicted that as many as 7 out of 10 Americans with employer-provided health coverage could lose their current health plan.” Politifact said there was a lack of context in his talking point. [Politifact.com, 2/2/11] Defended Vote for Healthcare Repeal, Claiming it Was Bureaucratic and Destroyed Jobs In a January 2011, Farenthold defended his vote repeal health care. One of the reasons he gives in the mandate that business that employ more than 50 people provide “bureaucrat-approved” health care, citing a study by the National Federation of Independent Businesses that estimates that the mandate would destroy 1.6 million jobs, 66 percent of those in small businesses. Farenthold said that the health care law crated “a maze of red tape that will put the federal government between you and your doctor” and creates “an unconstitutional mandate that all citizens must have a bureaucrat-approved health care plan.” He went on to say law would end “a 30-year bipartisan effort to prevent federal taxpayer-funded abortions” and said he would be co-sponsoring legislation that would allow the sale of health insurance across state lines. [Corpus Christi Caller Times, 1/23/11] Farenthold Supported Provisions of Health Care Reform, Yet Signed as Co-Sponsor of Repeal In an interview with The Monitor from McAllen, Texas, Farenthold seemed to support the major provisions of the health care reform law. “He said there should be a way to provide care for people with pre-existing conditions, to make it easier for people to get private insurance, and easier to get health care when you are in tough financial times,” The Monitor wrote.

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However, in opposing the bill, Farenthold said, “But there was so much bureaucracy, red tape and expense for both the government and for private businesses in the bill they passed last year, that it was a job killer more than a reform of health care.” [The Monitor, 1/05/11]

Immigration and Border Issues
Claimed to Be Troubled by Demonization of Immigrants In 2011, Farenthold said “I’m troubled by the demonization of immigrants, legal or illegal, in our party,” Rep. Blake Farenthold, a freshman Republican from Texas, told The New York Times. “We’ve got a country that was built on immigrants and immigration, and we’ve kind of lost sight of that.” [Topeka
Capital-Journal, 11/5/11]

Said E-Verify Would Cause 11 to 12 million undocumented immigrants to Migrate Back to Border for Jobs In 2011, Farenthold said with e-verify the 11 to 12 million undocumented immigrants would migrate back to the border for jobs. The Texas Tribune live-blogged throughout the weekend from The Texas Tribune Festival‘s race and immigration track. The paper reported that in response to a question on what to do with the 11 to 12 million undocumented immigrants Farenthold said roll out E-verify, do not exploit illegal immigrants and there will be a natural migration “back to Mexico or where the jobs are. [Texas
Tribune, 9/24/11]

Said Guest Worker Program was a Good Step for Immigration Reform In 2011, Farenthold said the issue of illegal immigration was helped by a guest worker program. Farenthold said immigration reform involved figuring out figuring out who was carrying drugs versus water and tortillas. Farenthold said he did not support amnesty for the 11 million to 12 million people who are in the country illegally, but both also acknowledge that immigration reform in the form of a guestworker program is a good step forward. [El Paso Times, 9/25/11] Helped Constituent Get Green Card to Pay Loan for Son’s College; Said Immigration System was Too Complicated In May 2011, one of Farenthold helped constituents get green cards to pay for sons tuition. The Caller reported that Sammy Giraldo was not a citizen, rather he was attending medical school on a student visa and therefore did not qualify for federally supported financial aid. His parents waited for years to be granted permanent resident status, could not co-sign for his private loans until they got their green cards. With the help of caseworkers with Farenthold’s office, Giraldo’s parents got their green cards. Farenthold said, “There is no question that they're bound up in too much red tape in a system that is too complicated,” he said. “You end up with people who fall through the cracks with innocent paperwork mistakes. We've got to come up with the right balance, and that's not going to be easy.” [Caller, 5/30/11] Sent a Letter to DHS and Requested More Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to Aid Protect the TexasMexico Border

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In June 2011, the Department of Homeland Security gave notification that a decision would be made at the end on the year as to who would receive additional unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). In April 2011, Farenthold along with other U.S Representatives from Texas sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security Secretary, Janet Napolitano asking for an increase in UAV coverage. “We request that you locate one of these two systems at a location immediately along the Texas-Mexico border,” the letter stated. “Texas Rangers and Texas Department of Public Safety have brought to our attention that the absence of UAS (also known as UAVs) along the border already has hindered law enforcement operations. Both federal and state law enforcement rely on the critical surveillance these systems provide, and having a UAS readily available along the border is crucial to their mission.”
[Brownsville Herald, 6/10/11] Requested Unmanned Aerial Vehicle to Patrol the Texas-Mexico Border

In 2011, Farenthold signed on to a letter requesting at least one more unmanned aerial vehicle to patrol the Texas-Mexico border. U.S. House Homeland Security Committee members Henry Cuellar, D-Laredo, Michael McCaul, R-Austin, and Blake Farenthold, R-Corpus Christi, sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano with the request, Cuellar said. “Texas tends to be overlooked, probably for political reasons,” said Farenthold. “We’re the logical spot. We have the most border, not to mention our coastline, and we need some more assets down here.” [The Monitor, 4/28/11;
Herald Net, 4/29/11]

Fact Check: Said Porous Border with Mexico was Opportunity for Terrorists, Cut Border Security Funding In 2011, Farenthold said the porous U.S.-Mexico border created an opportunity for terrorists coming into the country. He said in the past five years, 739 aliens with possible terrorist ties were nabbed crossing into Texas illegally. “A porous U.S.-Mexico border presents an opportunity for terrorists to enter the U.S. undetected,” said Farenthold. [Houston Chronicle, 3/28/11] Voted to Cut Border Security Funding In 2011, Farenthold voted for legislation that cut border funding for border security technology by $250 million “– slowing efforts to better secure the border with new and much-needed border surveillance technologies.” [Democratic Leader, Rep. Pelosi, accessed 4/3/11; HR 1, Vote #147 , 2/19/11] Said Republicans Vilified Legal And Illegal Immigrants as Taking Advantage of the System Farenthold said the vast majority of immigrants didn’t come to the U.S. to take advantage of the U.S. He said, “big-city Republicans don’t understand the border and have vilified both legal and illegal immigrants.” [The Herald, 2/7/11]

Israel
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Jobs
Admitted He Had Not Brought Many Jobs to Brownsville In 2011, Farenthold said, “I’m for getting rid of unnecessary government regulations,” said Farenthold. “I’m for getting people back to work, but I am going to be a stickler when it comes to wasting taxpayers’ hard earned money.” It was reported, “Farenthold admitted he has not brought many jobs to Brownsville.”
[Action 4 News, 8/24/11]

Cost Texas 4,227 Jobs By Voting for Continuing Resolution In February 2011, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee aired an ad attacking Farenthold for voting for the February 2011 continuing resolution. Farenthold’s vote “will cost 4,227 jobs in Texas while still preserving taxpayer subsidies for Big Oil companies making record profits.” Farenthold defended his vote saying, “In cutting government, we cut a huge variety of programs a lot of which I would have liked to see increase and a lot of which I’d like to see decreased more.” [Texas Tribune,
2/23/11]

When Asked Whether Budget Cuts Would Hurt Job Creation, He Said Experts Went Both Ways When asked for his reaction to economist’s assertion that $60 billion in cuts will hurt job creation Farenthold sad economists are a lot like lawyers, you can’t get a straight answer out of them. You’ve got experts on both sides that go either way. [CSPAN, Washington Journal, 2:09, 3/9/11]

Labor and Working Family Issues
Said Businesses Not Government Put People To Work, Then Said He Was Focused on Funding Projects to Create Jobs on South Texas Highways Farenthold said he hoped to see legislation come out of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee that would fund projects and jobs working on South Texas highways. “Jobs are the key to everything right now,” he said. “Getting people back to work will solve a plethora of problems.” [Caller, 2/5/11] On his website Farenthold said “We can create new jobs. Businesses, not government, are the key to putting people back to work.” [blakefarenthold.com, accessed 2/7/11]

Miscellaneous
Agreed to Support the National “Burn Pit Victim” Registry

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In 2011, Farenthold, after he was made aware of local Iraq war veterans that suffered diseases and illnesses due to burn pits that were used to dispose chemicals and waste overseas, he agreed to support a bill that would create the national “Burn Pit Victim” Registry. Farenthold met with constituents and discussed how to make changes on national policies that prevented burn pit victims from receiving adequate care. [KRISTV, 7/7/11] Met with Wife of Iraq Vet Suffering Lung Disease Due to Chemicals He Came in Contact with in Iraq In 2011, Captain Leroy Torres’ wife Rosie met with Farenthold to bring attention to the sever lung disease she suffered due to burn pits used to dispose of chemicals in the Iraq war. Captain Torres served in the military for 21 years before coming home from Iraq in 2008. Torres had problems getting his medical bills paid for, “Unfortunately, I haven’t been successful with the VA. They denied my claim- my reimbursement. All of that was denied,” he said. [KRIS TV, 7/7/11] Participated in Six Course Dinner at Ocean Drive Home of U.S. Rep. Congressman Blake Farenthold According to the Corpus Christi Caller-Times the “American Heart Association supporters were treated to a lovely dinner under the oaks at the Ocean Drive home of U.S. Rep. Congressman Blake Farenthold May 20. The ‘Dinner with a Congressman’ was a 2011 Heart Ball auction item, and guests enjoyed a sixcourse dinner courtesy of chef Doan Shockley of Shockley Market, Sam Kane Beef Processors, H-E-B, and Triton Sea Products paired with wines from Republic National Distributors, and ambiance courtesy of Butler Signature Rentals. Guests enjoyed lively political discussion as well as the inside scoop into the goings-on of this most historic Congressional session.” [Corpus Christi Caller-Times, 5/29/11]
Said He Thought He Would Single-Handedly Change the World When He Went to Washington

In 2011, Farenthold said “I went in with the youthful vigor that I could single-handedly change the world,” however, he said, “you fast come to the realization that you’re 1/435th of one-half of one-third of the government.” Farenthold said a company in his district was considering opening up a plant in China due to regulations. Farenthold said, “I don’t know how these bureaucrats sleep at night,” he said. “Nobody in the Washington regulatory bureaucracy gets fired for saying no. There’s a lot of power to the status quo.” [USA Today,
5/21/11]

In 2011, Farenthold Took Up Residence in DC and Bought a Condo In 2011, Farenthold said he struggled to find an apartment and felt it made more sense to buy a condo in DC. He was worried about how becoming a DC resident may come across. “I thought, ‘How am I going to justify this to the Tea Party who supports term limits?’ and ‘How do I take this back home that I bought a place in Washington and not look like I’ve gone D.C.?” [USA Today, accessed 5/23/11] Cameron County District Attorney Armando R. Villalobos Democrat Considered Run Against Farenthold

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In 2011, Cameron County District Attorney Armando R. Villalobos said he was considering a run against Blake Farenthold. He established an exploratory committee to test the waters and was scheduled to hold a reception to test his candidacy. “What I have to do right now is go out and see what the atmosphere is like, to see what people are interested and if that type of candidacy would be embraced or rejected at this point,” Villalobos said. “I haven’t quite decided whether to take that race (Congressional race) or to seek re-election,” he said. [Brownsville Herald, 5/7/11] Met with Governor Perry In April 2011, Farenthold met with governor Perry. [Caller.com,4/19/11] Farenthold: “I’ve Never Worked For A Poor Person.” Farenthold: “I’ve Never Worked For A Poor Person.” In 2011, Farenthold addressed the National Federation of Independent Business. He said “I’ve never worked for a poor person.” My Harlingen News printed the DCCC press release with the headline “Representative Blake Farenthold is Absolutely Right: He Only Works for the Rich.” [Caller, 4/23/11; My Harlingen News, 4/26/11] Said People Who Received Unemployment Should Be Drug Tested Farenthold said “Drug testing for recipients of various welfare programs, I really think that’s something that needs to be considered. We’ve gotta, you know, nobody wants to starve anybody. Everybody wants to help folks out. But we’ve got a system where you can stay on unemployment for an awfully long time. And I think we need to create a system of decreasing benefits over time to encourage you to get a job. I think anybody who’s had an alcoholic in their family or somebody with a drug problem, realizes that until things get bad enough there’s no incentive to change. And I think we’re so generous in some of our social problems that people are unwilling to take a job outside in the heat. Rather than taking15 dollars to go do roofing they’d rather keep their 9 or 10 dollars in benefits. I think drug testing is not an unreasonable requirement for taking money from the government. [YouTube, Town Hall Meeting, Part 2, 00:22, 4/26/11]

Military Issues
Pledged to Support Full Service Medical Center and Health Care Funding and Transparency Act of 2010 for Veterans In March 2011, Farenthold visited the American Legion Post 390 in Raymondville, TX and promised to work to move HB 837 which calls for a Full Service Medical Center. He also said he would support the Health Care Funding and Transparency Act of 2010 to expand the Harlingen Clinic. [Texas Insider, 3/22/11] Said He Would Vote to Protect Veteran’s Programs and Social Security Against Budget Cuts In March 2011, Farenthold visited the American Legion Post 390 in Raymondville, TX. He said he supported budget cuts, but would vote to protect veteran’s and social security programs. He said he was committed to protecting veterans programs from any proposed cuts. [Texas Insider, 3/22/11]
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Said U.S. Should Have Taken Lead on Libya In March 2011, Farenthold said on Libya “It’s never too late to try and go in and do some good.” He went on to say “We should have taken the lead on it, but having the broad global support for our actions is always a good thing, and I’m glad the U.N. saw it our way.” [Congress.org, accessed 3/29/11]

Open Government
Introduced Legislation to Require Agencies to Show Receipts and Expenditures Every Two Weeks In 2011, Farenthold introduced legislation to require federal agencies to show receipts and expenditures every two weeks on agency websites. The bill read “Requirement- Each Federal agency shall publish on the official public website of the agency, at the end of each two-week period, a statement of all funds received and spent by the agency during that two-week period.”
[Govtrack.us, 3/25/11]

FLIP: Said the American People Demanded Increased Government Transparency In 2011, Farenthold introduced his firth piece of legislation to require federal agencies to post their receipts and expenditures on their official websites. “The American people have demanded that Congress cut the federal budget, reduce the size of government, and increase transparency,” Farenthold said. “I introduced H.R. 1061 to allow the American taxpayers to track federal expenditures and hold the government accountable for out-of-control spending.” [Brownsville Herald, 4/2/11] FLOP: Voted to Cut Government Transparency In March 2011, it was reported that several open government initiatives were set to end by May 31. The Office of Management and Budget was planning to take open government websites down such as paymentaccuracy.gov and USASpending.gov. The House allocated only $2 million in its bill, H.R. 1 for the e-government fund in 2011, while the White House requested $35 million.
[Federal News Radio, 3/31/11; HR 1, Vote #147 , 2/19/11]

Other Social Issues
Pledged to Seek Reform to Social Programs In 2011, it was reported that Blake Farenthold, Francisco Canseco and Bill Flores — the “Three Amigos” — pledged to cut spending and seek reform of social programs. [Blog, Houston Chronicle, 9/25/11] FLIP FLOP: Positive About Funding to General Manager of Public Broadcasting System in South Texas; Voted to Eliminate Funding for NPR In 2011, it was reported that cuts to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting in South Texas would effect “educational programming to classrooms in 42 school districts and public access to television and radio

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programming for about 206,000 people in 22 counties”, according to Don Dunlap, president and general manager of the South Texas Broadcasting System. Dunlap said he met with Farenthold on the issue and found that the Congressman was positive. “Congressman Farenthold has committed to keeping us informed of the process,” he said. [Caller, 4/6/11] Voted to Eliminate Federal Funding for NPR In March 2011, Farenthold voted for a bill that eliminated federal funding for NPR. The bill was designed to prevent to directly fund or purchase content from NPR. [CQ, 3/17/11; H R 1076, Vote #192, 3/17/11] Noncommittal on Whether He Would Support Additional Cuts to Public Broadcasting In 2011, Farenthold said he upped his personal contribution to National Public Radio, yet he voted for House resolution that proposed to cut NPR’s federal funding. When asked whether he would support additional cuts to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting Farenthold’s representative was noncommittal. [Caller, 4/6/11]

Personal Issues
Was Among Wealthiest Members of Congress with Net Worth of at Least $8.8 Million In 2011, Blake Farenthold was one of freshmen to make The Hill’s wealthiest members of congress list. Farenthold founded a computer consulting and Web design firm and has a net worth of at least $8.8 million. [The Hill, 9/06/11] Described as Filthy Rich Oilmen In 2011, Farenthold was described as one of two filthy rich-oil men Republican freshman. “Two oilmen in the freshmen class are also filthy rich: New Mexico’s Stevan Pearce ($8.4 – $38 million) and the Lone Star State’s Blake Farenthold ($10.4 – $31.4 million).” [Blog, Reuters, 8/19/11] Asked If He Should Be Setting a Better Example with His Weight Due to the diabetes epidemic in Brownsville, Farenthold was asked if he should be setting a better example with his weight. “I’d love to lose some weight,” said Farenthold. “It’s not as easy done as it is said.” [Action 4 News, 8/24/11] Hypocritically Defended Own Debt While Saying America Needed to Live Within Means In 2011, Farenthold said the large amount of credit card debt on his financial disclosure report between $45,000 and $150,000 was an anomaly. He said it was related to his campaign. “I have paid off all of my credit card debt, and continue to pay the full balance every month,” the statement said. “I believe that Congress should lead by example by balancing our check books.”

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The Washington Post reported that Farenthold, like many members of the large freshman class, have called for Congress to rein in federal spending, saying that “like the rest of America, the government needs to tighten its belt and work within its means.” [Washington Post, 6/17/11]

Politico: “Texas Rep. Blake Farenthold wants to clarify something for the record: he’s not that rich” In March 2011, Farenthold clarified that he was not that rich. After the Center for Responsive Politics analyzed his financial disclosure form and found that he was the third richest freshman, with assets of about $35.8 million, his office issued a statement that their reading was “grossly exaggerated.” “Congressman Farenthold has been blessed to be the beneficiary of the entrepreneurial spirit and hard work of many generations of South Texas ranchers, and farmers,” his office wrote in a statement. “Congressman Farenthold has a complex financial situation as he has inherited interests in several family businesses and partnerships which he owns with his sister and his children.” [Blog, On Congress, Politico,
3/17/11]

Said He Wished He was as Rich as the Center for Responsive Politics Reported; He Could Use a New Car In March 2011, Farenthold clarified that he was not that rich. After the Center for Responsive Politics analyzed his financial disclosure form and found that he was the third richest freshman, with assets of about $35.8 million, Farenthold wrote in the statement. “I wish I were worth as much as the reports imply, I could use a new car!” [Blog, On Congress, Politico, 3/17/11] Headline: “Rep. Blake Farenthold: I’m not that rich” In March 2011, Farenthold was reported as one of the wealthiest freshman, worth an estimated $35.8 million. In response Farenthold’s office issued a press release saying he “has been blessed to be the beneficiary of the entrepreneurial spirit and hard work” of his family, but his net worth was “grossly exaggerated.” Farenthold’s financial disclosure exaggerated his wealth because it listed a number of businesses and trusts co-owned with family members. He said, “I wish I were worth as much as the reports imply, I could use a new car!” When asked how rich he really was, Farenthold’s office said he was working with an accountant. ““It’s closer to $5 [million] to $7 million.” [Reliable Source, Washington Post, 3/15/11] Headline: “$7 Million not enough to feel rich, say millionaires” In March 2011, a poll was released by CBS saying when millionaires were asked if they felt rich four in ten said they didn’t. They said they would need $7.5 million to feel comfortable. [CBS
News, 3/15/11]

Fourth Wealthiest Freshman Worth Estimated $35.8 million

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The Center for Responsive Politics reported that Farenthold was the fourth wealthiest freshman members of congress. He was worth an estimated $35.8 million. [CNN Politics, 3/9/11] Complained About Lack of Dr. Pepper in Los Angeles Farenthold said he wanted a good bottle of Dr. Pepper on one of his trips. He complained that he couldn’t get the same dr. pepper in LA. He had a fridge full of his favorite type of Dr. Pepper in his congressional office. On his twitter, Farenthold wrote “No Dr. Pepper in a bottle to be had on AA concourse at LAX. Really????” Farenthold explained that the difference between regular Dr. Pepper and Dr. Pepper from Dublin is that, “True Dr. Pepper connoisseurs drink Dublin Dr. Pepper. It’s bottled with Imperial Pure Cane Sugar, not high fructose corn syrup.” [The Hill, 3/7/11] Expressed Disappointment that He Did Not Get Many Frequent Flier Upgrades as Congressman Farenthold was reported to have “quirky preferences” such as his focus on a specific type of dr. pepper and his desire for seat 12A. On his twitter, Farenthold wrote, “I AM on the transportation and Infrastructure committee... But I’m really after the Platinum upgrades [to] the DCA flights.” But complained that since he entered Congress he had gotten less frequent flier upgrades. “I’ve only had one [platinum upgrade] since I’ve been in [Congress],” and noted that the flights from Texas and Washington fall short of the miles needed to get him an upgrade. [The Hill, 3/7/11] Farenthold: “Somewhere out there is the body of a rubber chicken without a head” Farenthold said he did not receive office phone numbers from the previous congressman. “The only thing found in a desk was the head of rubber chicken,” Farenthold recalled, “Somewhere out there is the body of a rubber chicken without a head.” [Brownsville Herald, 2/7/11] Shared Condo with Daughter; Worked from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. In February 2011, Farenthold said his workday began at 6 a.m. and ended at 10 p.m. in the condo he shared with his daughter Morgan who was an intern for U.S. Rep. Mike Conaway, R-Texas. [Caller, 2/5/11]

Political Issues
District was Drawn to Keep Him Safe In 2012, Ryan Downton, a Republican lawyer told a panel of federal judges that Farenthold’s district was drawn to keep him safe. “We drew Farenthold a more Republican district,” Downton said. [Blog, Houston
Chronicle, 1/19/12]

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Redistricting Map Designed to Protect Farenthold and Canseco and Dilute Hispanic Vote In 2012, Gerardo Interiano, a staffer who drew the maps for Texas Speaker of the House Joe Straus, RSan Antonio testified before a panel of three federal judges, that the maps were designed to protect Farenthold and Canseco and the dilute Hispanic vote. It was reported “Under cross-examination, Interiano acknowledged that precincts with lower Hispanic voter turnout were sought to protect U.S. Rep. Francisco Canseco, R-San Antonio, and Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Corpus Christi, in those congressional districts, while keeping the percentage of registered Latino voters the same.” [Blog, Houston
Chronicle, 1/18/12]

Went Through Three Chiefs of Staff – Had Rapid-Fire Turnaround in Office In 2011, it was reported that Farenthold had gone through three chiefs of staff and seemed unfazed by the rapid-fire turnaround. Farenthold reportedly had a series of cadre of “blink-and-you’ll-miss-them chiefs of staff.” [Roll Call, 11/17/11] Member of Farenthold’s Staff Allegedly at House Party Where Police Were Called In 2011, Roll Call investigated an alleged party with some Farenthold staffers who were placed at an Annapolis, Md. Party where the police were called. “Our office has done a thorough internal review of the incident, and we found that none of our staffers were involved in inappropriate conduct that would impact their official duties,” said a statement HOH was handed at the office of Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Texas). It was attributed to District Director Monica Ledesma. When first contacted about our ongoing investigation, a Farenthold aide queasily asked what we were inquiring about. “The Annapolis party?” he asked before clamming up.” [Roll Call, 11/10/11]
Expected Tough Re-Election Battle In 2011, it was reported that Blake Farenthold expected his votes to be part of a tough re-election battle in 2012. [Blog, Houston Chronicle, 9/25/11]

Said House Freshman Had Not Exercised Enough Power In 2011, Farenthold said the freshman class of Republicans had not exercised enough power. “I don’t think we’ve been bold enough, or exercised our power enough,” Farenthold said. [Blog, Houston
Chronicle, 9/25/11]

Farenthold’s District Faced Legal Challenge Over Redistricting from Justice Department In 2011, it was reported that Canseco and Farenthold’s re-drawn districts by the Republican legislature did not meet federal requirements, according to the Justice Department. “Changes made to two South Texas congressional districts by the Legislature as part of the redistricting process violate the minimum requirements of the Voting Rights Act, civil rights lawyers for the U.S. Department of Justice told the federal D.C. District Court… The department’s filing focused on the changes made to the 23rd and 27th Congressional districts, which are represented by Republicans Francisco “Quico” Canseco and Blake Farenthold.” [San Antonio Express-News, 9/24/11]

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Justice Department May Have Rejected Redistricting Map Due in Part to Farenthold’s District In 2011, it was speculated upon that the Justice Department opposed the Republican redistricting maps because there was gerrymandering to help freshman Republican Reps. Francisco “Quico” Canseco and Blake Farenthold. [The Hill, 9/19/11] Called on to Tell Consultant to Release Website to Opponent In 2011, the Caller called on Farenthold to exert his influence over his political consultant to give the website RoseMezaHarrison.com back to Democrat Rose Meza Harrison. Farenthold’s political consultant, Steve Ray bought RoseMezaHarrison.com, Harrison called on Farenthold to give her back the website name. The editorial read “And that’s where Farenthold enters this picture, or could. While there is no reason to doubt Ray’s word that buying RoseMezaHarrison.com was his idea, not Farenthold’s, there also is no reason for Farenthold not to step in and exert some influence on Ray. To do so would be — dare we say it? — statesmanlike.” [Editorial, Caller, 9/14/11] District Changed Drastically; Dept. of Justice Did Not Thing Redistricting Maps Met Minority Standards In 2011 redistricting, Farenthold’s district changed drastically. The U.S. Dept. of Justice did not agree that redistricting maps met federal minority voting rights standards. Farenthold’s district doglegging north toward San Antonio, however, it was once a democratic stronghold connecting several counties stretching from Corpus Christi to Brownsville. [Caller, 9/20/11] Needed Full Time Scheduler In 2011, Farenthold said he needed a full time scheduler and said it was one of the most important jobs in his congressional office. “I laughed when they told me I needed to hire a full-time scheduler, but now I’ve got a full-time scheduler. It’s one of the most important jobs in the office.” [Brownsville Herald, 8/29/11] Farenthold Had Safer District After Redistricting In 2011, after redistricting Farenthold reportedly had more Republicans in his Corpus Christi-based district that now stretches north. [Associated Press, 8/24/11] Republicans Tried to Make Farenthold’s District Safer By Making it Less Hispanic In 2011, it was reported that Steve Bickerstaff, a law professor at the University of Texas said Republicans in the Legislature had tried to make GOP Rep. Blake Farenthold’s district more politically safe by making it less Hispanic, and thus less Democratic. [San Antonio Express-News, 8/15/11] Said He Would Be Alright Being One-Term Congressman

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In August 2011, Farenthold told Action 4 News he’d be alright if he became just a one-term congressman.
[Action 4 News, 8/24/11]

Had Brighter Outlook on Re-Election Due to Redistricting In 2011, it was reported that had a brighter outlook on being re-elected due to redistricting. “The outlook is brighter, too, for Texas Rep. Blake Farenthold, a conservative talk-radio host who edged 14-term Democrat Solomon Ortiz by 797 votes. Farenthold will find more Republicans in a Corpus Christi-based district that now stretches north.” [Virginian-Pilot, 8/24/11] Said He was Doing Something Right Because He was Being Criticized In 2011, Farenthold said he was doing something right because he was characterized as extreme from both sides of party. “He’s characterized as a crazy, right-winged extremist in certain campaign ads. To some, U.S. Representative Blake Farenthold of Texas District 27 is stubborn, remembered as unwilling to budge when the government faced shutdown. To others, he’s a wimpy Tea Parties, giving in when voting for the current budget. ‘That’s an indication you are where you need to be,’ said Farenthold on criticism from both parties. ‘When both extremes are not happy, that’s where you found compromise.’” [Valley
Central, 8/24/11]

Democrat Rose Meza Harrison Announced Against Farenthold, Calling Him a Tea Party Pawn In September 2011, Nueces County Democratic Party Chairwoman Rose Meza Harrison announced that she was running against Farenthold. Harrison was also Nueces County’s assistant attorney. Harrison called Farenthold a Tea Party pawn. [Caller, 9/1/11] Received 66% Score From Heritage Action for America Score Card Farenthold received 66% score from Heritage Action for America scorecard in August 2011 that encompassed 30 key votes and 5 co-sponsorships. [Heritage Action for America, accessed 8/29/11] Encouraged Republicans to Seek 34th Congressional District In 2011, Farenthold encouraged fellow Republicans to seek the new Congressional District 34, and to reach out to different communities that traditionally vote Democratic, but share Republican values. According to the Brownsville Herald, Farenthold said, “I keep telling people that South Texans are more conservative than the Republican establishment gives them credit for.” He said further, “I continue to push for Republicans to reach out to communities that share our values, but have historically voted Democrat. The national Democrat party has moved too far left for many.” [Brownsville Herald, 6/20/11] Said He Looked Forward to Courts Decision on Finalizing Redistricting Lines In 2011, Farenthold he looked forward to the court finalizing the redistricting lines. He said “I appreciate the hard work the Texas legislature put into drawing districts that are representative of the people in the great state of Texas. He went on to state “I am committed to representing the people in the district that I currently serve throughout the 112th Congress. I also look forward to the opportunity to serve in whatever new district the legislature and the courts finalize.” [Brownsville Herald, 6/1/11]
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Defended Honor of Jaime Zapata after Newspaper Claimed the ICE Agent was Killed Because He Provoked Alleged Killers
In May 2011, a leading Mexican newspaper reported that suspects in the fatal attack on ICE Special Agent Jaime J. Zapata changed their story and claimed that Zapata and his partner provoked the encounter that led to the death of Special Agent Zapata. Farenthold reacted swiftly to the allegations: “Special Agents Victor Avila Jr. and Jaime Zapata were brutally attacked while working as a part of ICE’s attaché office in Mexico City. Zapata died in the line of duty as a result of the unprovoked attack.” He also said, “It is obscene for the assailants to claim that their assault on American law enforcement officers was in selfdefense. I will work to aggressively pursue this case on behalf of the Avila and Zapata families.” [Monitor, 5/20/11]

Headline: Representative Blake Farenthold is Absolutely Right: He Only Works for the Rich In April 2011, the My Harlinton News reported, “Rep. Blake Farenthold (TX-27), who has disputed being rich despite claiming millions in assets, told the National Federation of Independent Business audience that he ‘never worked for a poor person.’ Representative Farenthold’s voting record in Congress backs him up entirely. Even though over 2 million Texans are enrolled in Medicare and 27.2% of his district falls below federal poverty levels, he voted for the Ryan 2012 Budget to end Medicare rather than eliminate taxpayer giveaways for the ultra rich and tax-payer giveaways for big oil.” [Blog, My Harlingen
News, 4/26/11]

Went Back on Pledge to Do Simple Bills Everyone Could Understand Because Otherwise Nothing Would Pass In 2011, Farenthold said “Incumbents like their jobs and want to be re-elected,” he said. “This shows in their willingness to kick the can down the road with all these continuing resolutions. They read the headlines and they do a lot based on what’s being reported.” He went on to say “When I ran I was a big proponent of ‘Let’s ... do short, simple bills everyone can understand,” he said. “Well, every short, simple bill that has passed has gone nowhere in the Senate because we have no leverage…Really, the only way we’re going to get some of these policy things we want done is to tack them on to something that has to pass,” he said. “It’s distasteful but it looks like it’s the only way we’re going to get anything done.” [Caller.com, 4/14/11] Said He Saved Thousands by Buying from Non-Government Vendors In 2011, Farenthold said he introduced House Resolution 1061, the Federal Agency Transparency Act because “There’s a disconnect from reality when it comes to money in Washington,” he said. “It’s a spending culture, and the vendors know it.” He said he booked flights directly with airlines and saved over $28,000 on purchases such as office furniture by using non-government vendors. [Caller.com, 4/14/11] Voted Along Party Lines on Major Issues In 2011, Caller reported that Farenthold voted along party lines in all major issues including environmental regulation, budget bills and homeland security. [Caller.com, 4/14/11]

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Said He was Not as Naïve and Intended to Use a Crow Bar to Get Legislation Through In 2011, Farenthold said that Congress was reactive and segmented. “I guess that’s part of the education of Freshman Farenthold,” he said during a recent with the Caller-Times editorial board. “Going from the naiveté of thinking we’re going to do the right thing to, ‘Well, we’re going to have to use a crow bar to get stuff through.’” [Caller.com, 4/14/11] Raised Just $19,000 from PACs in 2010; Raised nearly $78,000 from PACs the First Quarter of 2011 In 2010, Farenthold raised just $19,000 from corporate and special-interest political action committees. In 2011 he raised nearly $78,000 from such PACs -- which could nearly halve the $156,000 debt he reported at the end of 2010. Farenthold raised more than 80 percent of his overall PAC contributions in the weeks following the November election. [The Republic, 4/15/11; Editorial, OpenSecretsBlog.com, 4/14/11] Staff Assistant was Olivia Alexandra Chriss In February 2011, Farenthold’s staff assistant was 23-year-old Olivia Alexandra Chriss from Corpus Christi, Texas. [The Hill, 2/15/11] Communications Director was Margarita Lea Valdez In February 2011, Farenthold’s Communications director was Margarita Lea Valdez from Lansing, Mich.
[The Hill, 2/16/11]

Former Rep. Solomon Ortiz Jr. Considered Run Against Farenthold In March 2011, former state Rep. Solomon Ortiz Jr. considered running against Farenthold. He said, “It’s something you always think about.” [Politico, 3/7/11] Seat Unstable Due to Latino Push for South Texas Seat
In March 2011, Farenthold’s

seat was considered unstable ground because Latinos were pushing for a seat in South Texas in redistricting. [Abilene Reporter-News, 3/4/11] Under Redistricting Plan Rep. Cuellar Agreed to His District Could Become More Conservative Under the redistricting plan Rep. Henry Cuellar agreed to Farenthold’s district would be redrawn north Corpus Christi, making it a safer house seat for conservatives. The Monitor reported “state legislators would need to either keep Farenthold’s district in the Valley or give the region two of the four new congressional districts, creating open seats in Cameron and Hidalgo counties for politicos to tussle over.” [Monitor, 3/7/11] Installed Surveillance Cameras at his District Offices

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In March 2011, Farenthold installed surveillance cameras at his district offices after doors were found unlocked. Farenthold said that although it was likely a cleaning crew error he was erring on the side of caution. [KIII TV, 3/24/11] Only Texas District Considered Tossup by Cook In March 2011, Farenthold had the only seat in Texas considered a tossup by the Cook Political Report.
[San Antonio Express, 3/26/11]

Openly Speculated About One-Term Run Farenthold reportedly openly speculated that he would be a one-term congressman. In February 2011, he was aware of his slim win in 2010 and the expected rise in Hispanics voting in 2012 did not look good either. Democrats were hoping that the spike in Hispanic voters for the Presidential election would bump Farenthold out of office. [Politico, 2/8/11] On Election Night Said: “I had a nightmare that I won: And now it's like, Now what do I do?” The Washington Post reported that Farenthold said “Early on in the race, I had a nightmare that I won: And now it's like, “Now what do I do?’” [Texas on the Potomac, Houston Chronicle, 11/5/10] Said His Election was “Divine Intervention” In a March 2011 Farenthold said his election was divine intervention. He said, “I really feel like I was called to run for office at this time,” he said. “A whole bunch of things all came together at once. . . . I can’t credit that to anything but divine intervention.” [Washington Post, 3/1/11] Claimed to Read Every Bill Before it Came to Vote In February 2011, Farenthold said “I read every bill before it comes up to vote, but I don't have time to do the background research on it,” he said. “They're doing pretty good and we've got a couple of people that understand the issues in our Corpus Christi and Brownsville offices, which I think is important.” [Caller,
2/5/11]

Was Learning How Washington Game was Played In February 2011, Farenthold said he was just learning how to play the game in Washington.
“I think what has happened to me is the revelation that the House of Representatives, even with its new majority, is one-half of one-third of the U.S. government, and I'm one of 435 members of that House.”

“You go in with big plans and ideas and you quickly learn you have to sway a lot of people to your point of view to make it happen.” [Caller, 2/5/11] In February 2011, Farenthold said his legislative strategy was a work in progress. [Caller, 2/5/11]

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Hispanic Voting-Rights Group Submitted Redistricting Plan Which Put Farenthold’s District in Danger In 2011, a Hispanic voting-rights group called the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund filed a redistricting plan for Texas that created nine Hispanic-majority congressional districts. Under the plan Farenthold would be in jeopardy of losing his district. Politico reported Farenthold had a “surprise winner over Rep. Solomon Ortiz.” [Politico, 4/11/11] TV Station Said He Got Into Office Due to GOP Landslide KIII TV said, “While Farenthold clearly got into office as part of the last election’s GOP landslide,” he said he would part ways with his party when it was appropriate. [KIII TV, 2/24/11]

Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid
Farenthold Said Ryan Budget Protected Medicare for Current and Near Retirees
In 2011, Farenthold touted his vote for the 2012 Republican budget in a press release. He wrote “We must preserve and protect Medicare for our Seniors. I voted for a federal budget (Ryan plan) that will put this program on sound financial footing for our Seniors and grandchildren…The Ryan plan protects Medicare for current and near retirees and saves it so that benefits will be available for future retirees when they need them.” [Rep. Farenthold, press release, 4/21/11]

On Ryan Plan and Medicare: “I guarantee they [plans] are not going to get through if they don’t provide coverage to everyone who needs it” In 2011, Farenthold was asked about the Paul Ryan plan. The women said she was afraid her Medicare would change and she was afraid for her younger daughter who was a breast cancer survivor. Farenthold said “And finally with respect to the health care. If we do not fix or change Medicare there is not enough with Medicare rising at 7% a year, there’s not enough money if you taxed everybody to the poor house there would not be enough money to pay for it. We’ve got to find a way to control the costs and provide more efficient care and the government has failed miserably at that and the Ryan plan gives the private sector the opportunity to do that, while I think still putting in minimum standards and minimum…we haven’t flushed out what those plans are gonna be, but I guarantee they are not going to get through if they don’t provide coverage to everyone who needs it.” [YouTube, Town Hall Meeting, Part 5, 7:00-11:30, 4/26/11] Said He Would Vote to Protect Veteran’s Programs and Social Security Against Budget Cuts In March 2011, Farenthold visited the American Legion Post 390 in Raymondville, TX. He said he supported budget cuts, but would vote to protect veteran’s and social security programs. He said he was committed to protecting veterans programs from any proposed cuts. [Texas Insider, 3/22/11] Said He Wasn’t Expecting Full Social Security Benefits; Talked About Increasing Social Security Age Farenthold was asked if the retirement age should be increased for social security. He said “it’s going to have to be increased.” The math doesn’t work on social security. It was enacted at a time when typically
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people didn’t live as long as they do today. He said it would have to be addressed in a responsible manner that doesn’t leave the people who are retired now or about to retire, we can’t rip the rug out from under them. But I’m telling my kids and even myself, I’m 50, I’m not expecting full Social Security benefits. I’m a big fan of Social Security, but we’ve got to be realistic, be it Social Security or pensions. It may not be so much cutting Social Security, but changing the rules associated with Social Security to where the retirement age comes up. [CSPAN, Washington Journal, 5:08-6:15, 33:33, 3/9/11]

Stem Cells Tax Issues
Protestors Gathered to Criticize Farenthold for Opposing Proposal to Tax Wealthy In 2011, protestors gathered outside of Farenthold’s office to criticize him for failing to support a Democratic proposal to increase taxes paid by the wealthiest Americans. [Corpus Christi Caller-Times, 10/1/11] Farenthold Criticized for Supporting Tax Credits for Purchase of Natural Gas Vehicles In a 2011 op-ed by Peggy Venable, the Texas Director of Americans for Prosperity criticized Farenthold among others for supporting tax credits for the purchase of natural gas vehicles under H.R. 1380, the NAT GAS Act. [Op-ed, Peggy Venable, Caller, 6/8/11] Argued Against Tax Increases on Oil and Gas Companies; Favored Energy Policies Such as Hydraulic Fracking In 2011, Farenthold wrote that it made no sense to “demand tax increases for oil and gas companies.” He wrote that “Adding more oil and gas taxes would also eliminate good paying American jobs, slow domestic production and force American families to pay higher prices at the pump. Oil and gas companies should be encouraged to explore and produce as much oil and gas as possible. These companies pay a lot of taxes…The call to increase taxes on oil and gas companies is shortsighted and will hurt our economic recovery.” Farenthold also wrote that hydraulic fracking and other all-of-the-above energy policy had potential. “Solving America’s energy crisis requires an all-of-the-above energy policy, where natural gas, wind and clean coal power America. Unconventional shale reserves, and technologies like hydraulic fracking, are game changers that have immense potential for America.” [Op-ed, Rep. Farenthold, The Caller, 6/8/11] Said Increasing Taxes on the Wealthy Meant They Would Look for Tax Shelters Farenthold was asked why it was so wrong to tax the wealthy. He said you’ve got to realize that as you increase the tax rate on the rich, a lot of people run their businesses through LLCs so those numbers are misleading. As you increase the tax rate on the wealthy they look for tax shelters and believe me they’ve got plenty of money to pay for tax lawyers and look for breaks.

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Note: Farenthold’s net worth is $35.8 million [CSPAN, Washington Journal, 9:47, 3/9/11; Reliable Source,
Washington Post, 3/15/11]

Favored a National Sales Tax Farenthold was asked about the interest deduction for home mortgages he said home ownership is important, but the government had gone too far with programs that gave out loans to people who couldn’t repay them. But I do think making homeownership more affordable through an interest deduction is reasonable. Of course if you in the direction of most of my freshman colleagues we want a flat tax or a fair tax, so deductions would be moot. (22:30) I’m all in favor of a national sales tax if it replaces the current income tax. The sales tax in addition to an income tax is just another way for uncle same to get in your pocket. (34:55) Again I think we need a flat or fair tax so everyone pays a percentage of their income or spending to provide for the things that are essential. [CSPAN, Washington Journal, 4:40, 3/9/11]

Tea Party
Faced Potential Tea Party Challenger Debra Medina In 2011, it was reported that Farenthold would have at least one Republican in 2012. It was speculated that Debra Medina may run. She scored with Tea Party voters when she challenged Gov. Rick Perry in 2010. [Op-ed, Mark Lisheron, Bellaire News, 10/11/11] Said S&P Threatening to Lower Debt Rating was Vindication to Tea Party In 2011, upon hearing news that Standard and Poor’s may lower the U.S. government debt rating of Washington didn’t get spending under control sent stocks stumbling. Farenthold said the S&P was responding to the increasing debt in America. He said the S&P needed a plan in place to get spending under control. “It makes it clear that not just the House of Representatives but the financial community understands that we’ve got a spending addiction,” Farenthold said. “This is a shot across the bow saying we need to get our financial house in order.” “It (the S&P report) is a vindication of the Tea Party and its stance that we’re spending too much,” said Republican Blake Farenthold, “The Tea Party isn’t a bunch of radical crazies. They are everyday folks who have enough common sense to realize that we are on an unsustainable path of ‘spend, spend, spend,’” Farenthold told Reuters. [The Monitor, 4/19/11; Reuters, 4/19/11] Credited Tea Party For House Win During a Tea Party gathering in February 2011, Farenthold said the Tea Party had to be given credit for his 2010 win. “There's no one single group I can credit with winning, but the Tea Party is certainly part of it,” Farenthold said. “I tell them a big part of their job is holding me and others accountable for our decisions.” [caller.com, 2/12/11]

Twitter
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Farenthold is Out of Touch @FlyAArmy Texas based airline, Texas drinks, I'll alert Walker, Texas Ranger. [Twitter, 1/29/11] No Dr. Pepper in a bottle to be had on AA concourse at LAX. Really???? [Twitter, 1/29/11]

Transportation Issues
Introduced Legislation to Designate Portions of US 59, 77 and 281 as an Interstate In 2011, Farenthold introduced his second bill, H.R. 1535, which designated portions of US 59, 77 and 281 as an interstate. “An interstate is one of the greatest factors to encourage economic development and job creation in South Texas,” Farenthold said. [The Herald, 4/16/11] Asked Napolitano About Trusted Traveler Program During a February 2011 homeland security hearing, Farenthold asked Napolitano about the Trusted Traveler program. That program would allow people able to give extensive personal information the ability to move through airport checkpoints quicker. Napolitano said she did believe in the program and was working swiftly for it. [Aviation News Today, 2/9/11] Said Pat Downs at Airport were too Aggressive In March 2011, Farenthold complained that he was “thoroughly searched” in a back room at an airport because he accidentally moved during a body scan. He showed pictures of two of young children being patted down and said “There are people who would go to jail for touching a child like that.” [Salt Lake Tribune, 3/17/11]

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