CRP Blog

Monday, June 9, 2008

Democrats Relent: US Senate to Privatize its Failing Restaurants

There's more than a bit of irony in the Democrat-controlled US Senate's decision to privatize (that is, "outsource" operation of) its restaurants, which consistently lose money and provide what Senator Feinstein calls "noticably subpar food and service."

Oh, where to begin on this one.

The difference in food service between the north (Senate) and south (House) side of the Captiol isn't as stark as the difference between formerly East and West Berlin -- but it's worth looking at.

The restaurants on the House side are privately run and have been for decades. The Senate restaurants are run by the United States federal government, whose expertise in running food establishments is questionable at best.

The results are:

House staffers virtually never go to the Senate side for lunch. Senate staffers frequently go to the House side. A clear example of consumers voting with their feet. I wonder how many West Berliners would have crossed over to East Berlin in the 1980's for lunch, even absent the Wall.

House restaurants make money. Senate restaurants lose money, specifically, over $18 million since 1993. Without an emergency subsidy of $250,000, the Senate restaurants won't make payroll this month. The House restaurants, managed by Restaurant Associates, have generated $1.2 million in commissions paid back to the House since 2003.

Predictably, Senator Feinstein ran into a bit of trouble with her colleagues for suggesting the privatization option. According to the Washington Post, she was "heckled" by fellow Democrats for bringing it up in a closed door session. It appears the Democrats changed their mind once presented with the option of privatizing, or a 25% increase in prices if they were to continue to be government-run.

Read the complete story in this Washington Post story.

Social Networks:
Facebook Twitter YouTube
Contact Us  |  |  Site Map  |  Credits © Copyright 2010, California Republican Party.
Paid for by the California Republican Party. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate committee.