Among the many special interest morsels hidden in the 1600+ page Cromnibus bill, the potato lobby comes out a winner.
The bill will now allow the purchase of white potatoes with Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) vouchers.
The potato lobby has been more successful than the GOP keadership’s own party at getting what they want in the massive spending bill. Speaker of the House John Boehner is looking for Democrat votes to support the bill since his own party is finding it tough to swallow, especially without a mandate to defund Obama’s executive amnesty. And that’s not to say the Democrats are happy either. Possible presidential contender Sen. Elizabeth Warren is agitating against the bill.
But at least there will be potatoes. “White potatoes have been excluded from WIC since fruits and vegetables were first allowed under the program in 2009. It’s not that white potatoes themselves aren’t nutritious, but they’re often used to make french fries, which are usually fried or baked in unhealthy fats and oils,” writes the AP.
The potato industry has fired back in recent times against its bad PR, claiming potatoes have “potassium, dietary fiber and folate, a water-soluble B vitamin.”
Senator Susan Collins, from the potato-growing state of Maine, said in a statement yesterday, “Potatoes are cholesterol-free, fat-free and sodium-free, and can be prepared in countless healthy ways.”
The new potato-friendly guidelines were opposed by the Institute of Medicine, which said WIC recipients already eat enough of the carb-laden tuber.
Other opponents of the white potato include Dr. Sandra Hassink, a Delaware-based pediatrician focused on obesity issues and the president-elect of the American Academy of Pediatrics. She says the addition of white potatoes “is really putting the science aside and the balance of nutrition aside.”