Says Federal Government “Asleep at the Wheel,” When it Comes To Protecting Ag Interests, Gohmert Won’t Act To Help Save Tyler Area Jobs Because Walmart Heirs Helped Elect Him
TYLER, Texas—Congressional Candidate Hank Gilbert on Tuesday called for a U.S. Department of Justice investigation into anti-competitive practices by Walmart relating to the company’s ownership of its own milk plant.
Walmart purchased its own milk plant helped which lead to the bankruptcy of Dallas-based Dean Foods, the nation’s largest milk producer, which has a distribution facility in Tyler. Walmart pulled its business from Dean Foods after purchasing the plant.
“This is classic anti-competitive business behavior, and the Department of Justice should be investigating it,” said Hank Gilbert, candidate for Congress in Texas’ First Congressional District which stretches from Marshall to Lufkin and includes Tyler and all or parts of 12 Texas counties.
“This is like the robber barons of old,” Gilbert said.
“What’s to stop Walmart from buying its own herds of beef cattle, its own feedlots, and slaughterhouses, and cutting out the Texas rancher altogether,” asked Gilbert. “If the federal government doesn’t enforce existing antitrust laws, there is nothing to force massive corporations like Walmart to play fair and by the rules, which puts every American farmer at risk of having their throat cut by Walmart,” Gilbert said.
“The federal government is asleep at the wheel when it comes to protecting the interests of agriculture in our country,” Gilbert, a lifelong rancher and former high school agriculture teacher said.
He went on to question the actions of his opponent, Louie Gohmert, a 14-year Republican incumbent, for not calling for a DOJ investigation into Walmart’s anti-competitive practices previously.
“He sits on the House Judiciary Committee. There are at least 14 dairy farms in his district, there is a Dean Foods distribution center in his district, and about 1,840 dairy cows earning their owners around $6 million a year, and he does nothing,” Gohmert says. “He bragged about talking and giving advice to former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, but he couldn’t ask his buddy Jeff to investigate Walmart’s actions, even when the livelihood of farms and people in his own district was at stake,” Gilbert said.
“I’d say that’s just being out of touch, but it isn’t. The Walton family helped put Gohmert in Congress,” Gilbert said. “He’s just another member of Congress doing the bidding of billionaires,” he continued.
“It’s the moment of truth: does Gohmert stand up for his constituents and return the dirty money he’s received from the Waltons and those affiliated with Walmart and stand with me calling for an investigation, or does he continue letting his billionaire pals take advantage of his constituents,” Gilbert asked.
Gohmert Contributions: FEC Filings, Gohmert for Congress Committee.
FACT: Gohmert has accepted thousands in contributions from the Walton family that owns most of the stock in Walmart:
WALTON, S. R BENTONVILLE AR WALMART STORES INC. CHAIRMAN 9/10/04 0:00 $2,000
WALTON, CHRISTY BENTONVILLE AR HOMEMAKER 9/10/04 0:00 $2,000
WALTON, JIM BENTONVILLE AR ARVEST BANK GROUP INC. C E O 9/10/04 0:00 $2,000
WALTON, JOHN T BENTONVILLE AR TRUE NORTH PARTNERS LLC CHAIRMAN 9/10/04 0:00 $2,000
WALTON, LYNNE BENTONVILLE AR HOMEMAKER 9/10/04 0:00 $2,000
Source: Federal Elections Commission Data, 2003-2004 cycle, Louie Gohmert for Congress Committee
FACT: Gohmert’s District produces over $6 million in milk per year.
Value of product: $6,436,000
Total number of Dairy Farms: 14
Total number of dairy cows in CD 1: 1,840