GOP lawmaker’s bill targets government help for bin Laden film

A Republican lawmaker from Kansas wants to prevent the administration from helping Sony make a movie about the killing of Osama bin Laden. 

The Stop Subsidizing Hollywood Act introduced by Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-Kan.) would stop the Obama administration from spending taxpayer money to share information about the killing of bin Laden with Sony Pictures, which is looking to release a film about that event in October 2012.

{mosads}Jenkins said the bill, introduced on Friday, is necessary because the government has no role to play in helping the movie industry at a time of fiscal crisis.

“In an era of 9 percent unemployment, trillion-dollar deficits, credit downgrades, and record debt-ceiling extensions it is unconscionable that taxpayer dollars are being used to aid the Hollywood film industry in fact-checking and script research,” Jenkins said. “American families have been forced to go through their budgets line by line and look for ways to tighten their belts, and it is time the federal government does the same.”

Her bill, H.R. 2819, would specifically prevent the sharing of information about the bin Laden killing to any outside entity, and also require that any aid given by the Defense Department to Sony be repaid by the film industry.

While Jenkins stressed that fiscal concerns are the main reason not to help Sony with its bin Laden picture, House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Pete King (R-N.Y.) has pushed for a guarantee that the military and CIA would have a chance to review the film to ensure that no classified information is given away. King’s demands were a response to a New York Times report that the director of the movie, Kathryn Bigelow, was receiving “top-level access to the most classified mission in history.”

Republicans have also implied that the planned release of the movie in October 2012 is meant to help Obama’s reelection chances. Jenkins said in a statement last week that Sony is the “only studio to hold a political fundraiser for the president this cycle,” and said the movie would come out “weeks” before the 2012 election.


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