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    The Budget Deal -- and Why We're $17 Trillion in Debt

    Country singer Aaron Tippin’s old hit song “You’ve Got to Stand for Something (or You’ll Fall For Anything)” could be the new theme song for the Republican leadership in the U.S. House. There’s a reason that 71% of Republicans across America are dissatisfied with Republican leadership in Washington. The big … More

    Water Resources Bill: Don’t Repeat the Olmsted Lock Mistake

    In typical Washington fashion, lawmakers shoved an authorization for the Olmsted Lock and Dam Project—which, in this context looks a lot like an earmark—into the fast-moving, eleventh-hour deal ending the government shutdown and averting a debt crisis. Olmsted is located where the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers meet near the Kentucky, … More

    Congress Still Using Commemorative Coins to Get Around Earmark Ban

    House and Senate Republicans have introduced legislation that would prevent Congress from using commemorative coins to fund pet projects as a creative workaround to the earmark ban. In April, The Heritage Foundation’s sister organization, Heritage Action, first wrote about the commemorative coin process. Currently, Congressmen can introduce commemorative coin bills … More

    Congress Uses Commemorative Coins to Circumvent Earmark Ban

    Congress may have halted all official earmarks, but lawmakers have found other ways to steer pork to pet projects in their districts. One of the more creative methods is the authorization of commemorative coins. The use of commemorative coins to steer money to pet projects is nothing new, as Heritage … More

    Will the Senate Break Its Promise on Earmarks?

    U.S. senators last year promised they wouldn’t pass any bill with earmarks during the 112th Congress. President Obama even said he would veto legislation that contained pork-barrel projects. But with the Senate set to debate a transportation bill next week, one lawmakers is crying foul. Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE) uncovered … More

    Morning Bell: 'Buying' House Votes for Unpopular Legislation

    An examination of “administrative earmarks” around the time of congressional votes on key pieces of President Obama’s agenda suggests the White House used its power to fund local projects as a means to “buy” votes for major legislative efforts. Administrative earmarking refers to the federal government’s allocation of funds from … More

    Secret Earmarks Remain in Federal Budget

    USA Today reported this week that billions in earmarks remain tucked into the funding measure that keeps the federal government running for the remainder of the fiscal year.  Congress is debating right now how much to cut from the measure, yet these secret earmarks are not being openly discussed by … More

    House Transportation Rule is Waste Buster

    The House Republicans will soon debate and vote on a series of changes in the rules that govern how the House operates during the 112th Congress. Some of these rules are designed to facilitate the goal of greater spending restraint and, as a consequence, are being vigorously opposed by the … More

    Tea Party Already Changing Spending Culture in Washington

    The 112th Congress has not yet been sworn in, but the Tea Party’s anti-business-as-usual mandate is already being felt on Capitol Hill. National Journal‘s Major Garrett reports: About two weeks ago, Speaker-to-be John Boehner found himself in an odd conversation with a young Republican House member. Their talk may rank … More

    A Brief History of Earmarks

    Some in Washington seem to believe that the way our nation currently funds infrastructure projects is the only way. For example,  Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) told Politico: Let’s look at transportation. How do you handle that without earmarks, since that’s a heavily earmarked bill? How do you handle a Corps … More