Sen. William Proxmire, a Democrat from Wisconsin on the Senate Finance Committee, famously railed against what he deemed wasteful federal spending, issuing his annual ‘Golden Fleece’ awards. In 1974 the target of his criticism was the National Science Foundation, a federal body that funds scientific research. Proxmire held up as an example that year an $84,000 federal grant by a University of Minnesota psychologist Ellen Berscheid, Ph.D, who conducted relationship research. The project description included the subject of romantic love in its proposal. This provoked considerable controversy on use of tax dollars, and called into question use of public funds in scientific research.
Source: Psychology Today