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On today’s episode of “Everything Old Is New Again,” Barack Obama 2.0, referred to by some as “the Biden administration,” continues its torrid two-track pace of not only erasing everything with Donald Trump’s fingerprints on it that they can get their hands on but also ushering back in as much failed Obama policy as they can get away with.
Therefore it comes as no surprise that one of those “everything old is new again” things is the coveted (by Democrats) earmark. Earmarks, for those in need of a refresher, are “member-directed spending,” provisions, slyly tucked into some innocuous part of larger spending legislation, that directly fund pet projects championed by an individual member of Congress for the benefit of the member’s constituents, generally “back home.”
— Kimberley Strassel (@KimStrassel) February 19, 2021
Incidentally, the late West Virginia Democrat Sen. Robert Byrd was the champ of champs when it came to earmarks. Same Robert Byrd, by the way, who in his younger years was a member of the KKK, although not a grand wizard as many of his critics charged. Anyway, by the time Byrd retired, the chances were, anything that was built with federal dollars in West Virginia while he was in office, Byrd helped fund through earmarks — to the tune of more than $3.3 billion over his career.
Pretty slick, huh? Which is exactly why the pandering Democrat Party wants them back. House Republicans banned the practice in 2011 shortly after regaining the majority, with Senate Republicans ultimately supporting the ban.
That was then, this is now.
Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Sen. Pat Leahy (D-VT) — the respective chairs of the House and Senate Appropriations committees — will shortly announce the reintroduction of earmarks for spending bills in the next fiscal year, according to Just the News.
Leahy has endorsed bringing back earmarks several times over the years — of course he has; Leahy wouldn’t know how to work in a real job if his life depended on it, let alone function outside the D.C bubble — and his office now says he “has been clear about his intent to restore congressionally-directed spending in a transparent and accountable way as part of Congress’ constitutional power of the purse.”
By “transparent,” they mean as transparent as a drunken sailor knocking off a liquor store in the middle of the afternoon.
A spokesperson for LeLauro told Just the News that the congresswoman “has been clear that she supports member-directed funding for community projects” and is currently working to reform the earmarking process. She will “share additional information with members and the public in the coming weeks,” said her office.
Why it’s almost as if they read from the same talking points, huh?
On the other side of the coin, Politico Pro reports that several Senate Republicans, including Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and North Carolina Sen. Ted Budd, have been working together on a plan to publicly support the Earmark Elimination Act, which would permanently ban the Democrats’ favorite piggy bank.
Taxpayers should Not be paying for a teapot museum in North Carolina or a $50 million indoor rainforest in Iowa but Dems are bringing back pork projects. Conservatives still have the option and should maintain their internal rule against earmarks. https://t.co/38kZiCZ8Ch
— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) February 16, 2021
Citizens Against Government Waste President Tom Schatz told Just the News that earmarks are “the most corrupt, costly, and inequitable practice in the history of Congress.”
“They [have] led to members, staff, and lobbyists being incarcerated. In a form of legalized bribery, members of Congress vote for tens or hundreds of billions of dollars in appropriations bills in return for a few million dollars in earmarks.
“Earmarks go to those in power, as shown during the 111th Congress, when the 81 members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, who constituted 15% of Congress, got 51% of the earmarks and 61% of the money. Restoring earmarks will lead to the same results.”
Incidentally, CAGW publishes the Congressional Pig Book, an annual compilation of the pork-barrel projects in the federal budget. A “pork” project is “a line-item in an appropriations bill that designates tax dollars for a specific purpose in circumvention of established budgetary procedures.”
As I have said and written innumerable times in the past, anything the Democrat Party proposes, rejects, supports, or takes a stand against can be connected to the voting booth with no more than two dots. From a so-called “path to citizenship” — currently in play between Biden and Congressional Democrats to the tune of more than 11 million illegal aliens (the term used in federal immigration law, liberals, get over it) — to lying about “the not paying their fair share,” to earmarks and pork-barrel spending.
This is not breaking news. What Biden is now doing shouldn’t shock anyone. Not anyone who paid even a modicum of attention to his pandering “speeches” throughout the 2020 campaign. How anyone even close to fiscally responsible — including with their own money — can vote for today’s Democrats and their policies is beyond me.
Oh — I forgot. #MeanTweets