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GOP Rep: Let’s privatize federal lands to pay off debt

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WASHINGTON – Freshman Republican Rep. Dennis Ross of Florida proposed privatizing federally-owned lands as a way to reduce the national debt.

“I’m not an economist, but I have maintained a household. The federal government owns 70 per cent of Utah, for example. There are federal buildings,” Ross told Reuters in an interview published Tuesday. “If you need cash, let’s start liquidating.”

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The U.S. government owns 57 percent of Utah’s territory, the third highest state in terms of federal ownership — excluding Washington, D.C. — behind Nevada (85 percent) and Alaska (69 percent).

Ross’s idea isn’t a new one. Former Rep. Richard Pombo (R-CA) was known for proposing legislation to sell off federally-owned national parks and monuments.

The United States reached its debt limit of $14.3 trillion Monday. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner warned that failing to raise the ceiling by August 2 would force the government to start defaulting on its obligations.

Ross, a members of the Tea Party caucus, wasn’t sure that inaction would be such a big deal. “I don’t think Treasury has been up front with us,” he told Reuters. “I am not convinced the sky will fall in on August 3.”

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Image via electdennisross, Creative Commons licensed

[h/t Matt Yglesias]

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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‘This is how he gets us killed’: American Jews and allies horrified after Trump blurts out anti-Semitic trope

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President Donald Trump blurted out another anti-Semitic trope during his brief press availability Tuesday in the Oval Office.

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Conservative columnist blasts GOP as ‘partisan hacks for whom hypocrisy is second-nature’

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On Tuesday, President Donald Trump once again ripped into The Squad, this time to undercut an emotional press conference in which Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MN) described the conditions her Palestinian relatives live under.

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Sorry, I don’t buy Rep. Tlaib’s tears. I have watched her violence, craziness and, most importantly, WORDS, for far too long. Now tears? She hates Israel and all Jewish people. She is an anti-Semite. She and her 3 friends are the new face of the Democrat Party. Live with it!

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Trump-worshipping artist unveils insanely disturbing new painting — and the internet is having a field day

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