CINCINNATI (TDB) -- This is almost too fruity to believe. Oh-02 Republican U.S. Rep. Jean Schmidt agreed last month to cosponsor a House resolution perpetually declaring July "National Watermelon Month." But don't mark your calendars yet. The measure has been buried in a committee. And at the moment, Schmidt seems to be the only member of the Ohio House delegation who considers this a matter of such import it deserves congressional attention.
The push for a National Watermelon Month is backed by the National Watermelon Association, a trade group for the watermelon growers and dealers. Is it possible that Schmidt -- who signed on to co-sponsor H.R. 578 on December 11, 2007 -- agreed to lend her support in exchange for a campaign contribution or some other form of political support this election year? Perhaps the growers have in mind some kind of fundraising event or reception. Her interest in watermelons seems puzzling because watermelon production is not exactly a huge industry in Ohio, nor in Ohio's 2nd Congressional District which includes Cincinnati, its East Side suburbs and five Appalachian counties.
Schmidt put her name on co-sponsor list less than a month after
Dummocrats rated the National Watermelon Month resolution as among the silliest introduced in Congress this session. The measure notes that 4.2 billion pounds of watermelon are grown in the U.S. each year, that they are eaten and bought in all 50 states and are exported to Canada. It also proclaims that watermelon has been a nutritious family favorite for generations of Americans. H.R. 578 goes on to declare:
"Resolved, that it is the sense of the House of Representatives that there should be established a National Watermelon Month to recognize the health benefits of watermelon and the importance of watermelon to the agriculture industry of the United States."