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If anyone still feels that their interests are being well served by our elected officials, you are seriously deluded.

The Jan. 20 front page of The New York Times: "Fiscal Footnote: Big Senate Gift to Drug Maker" outlines how our very own Sen. Orrin Hatch placed a rider in the recently passed "fiscal cliff" bill that gave a huge windfall to drugmaker Amgen. This "little deal" will cost Medicare, and thus taxpayers, $500 million.

Now, I am certain that the good senator's decision was not swayed by the $59,000 he received from Amgen since 2007. After all, that is only a small part of the $5 million the company distributed to members of Congress through its army of 74 lobbyists.

Then, of course, there are also the untold additional amounts given by pharmaceutical groups, including Amgen, to Utah Families Foundation, OrrinPAC and Freedom Path, which sponsored advertisements attacking Hatch's opponent.

I thought Congress was interested in cutting spending and reducing our debt, but it appears that its members continue to focus only on feathering their own nests.

At what point do we become outraged enough to stop this nonsense?

George Mantes

Salt Lake City

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