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Pay-for-Promo Bill Introduced

The Bush administration keeps getting knee-deeper in the big muddy of questionable pay-for-promo policies.

In the wake of a report on the administration's PR spending and yet another revelation of a columnist with a government contract--syndicated columnist Maggie Gallagher with the Department of Health and Human Services--Democratic lawmakers have introduced legislation to crack down on pay-for-play government PR contracts.

According to the study, prepared by staffers of the House Government Reform committee,  the Bush administration spent $88 million on PR contracts in 2004, up from the $39 million the Clinton administration spent in 2000.

It is now clear that the Administration has consistently misused taxpayer dollars to mislead the public and undermine our democracy,” said California Democratic Representative George Miller, who has been one of the most vocal critics of the revelations of government contracts with conservative columnists.

The bill, introduced Wednesday by Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), and co-sponsored by Miller, would "require that advertisements and all public communications paid for by the federal government prominently indicate their federal funding source, and make permanent the U.S. code prohibitions against publicity and propaganda."

Miller's office has yet to hear back from the GAO on its requested investigation into Armstrong Williams' contract with the Department of Education.