New Balance Running Shoe Earmark Would Cost Taxpayers Billions and Lead to More Injuries

It’s crony capitalism at its worst: A provision in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2017 would require that Service members use an allowance they receive to buy sneakers that are 100% American made. This would effectively rig the system so that they all have to patronize New Balance. No doubt, that’s great news for New Balance and their lobbyists, but it’s bad news for taxpayers and even worse news for our troops. As Reason puts it:

It's a good deal for the administration, the company, its lobbyists, and the members of Congress whose districts house the New Balance factories. It's not good for taxpayers (the New Balance shoes are $30 more expensive than shoes currently available at troop stores), and it's not good for new recruits, who went from being able to choose among 14 pairs of sneakers to being able to choose among three pairs and may see more foot injuries as a result.

That's why IWV supports U.S. Representative Mark Sanford’s Freedom in Footwear Amendment, which would strip this $320 million earmark out of the National Defense Authorization Act. Our laws shouldn’t be used to reward one politically-connected company.  Please click on the social media icons below to share this important story with your friends and family.

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