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  • earmarks

    No Honor Among Thieves

    Defenders of earmarks often insist that it is their “constitutional duty” to steer as many federal dollars to their districts as possible (never mind that Congress waited 200 years before earmarking at the extremely high levels it does today). As more and more congressmen are directing more and more money … More

    Morning Bell: A Case Study on Everything That Is Wrong With Washington

    The reason Congress has an approval rating at an all-time low (only 16% approve in the latest survey) is that the American people simply don’t trust their leaders to look beyond their own narrow interests and do what is good for the country. The farm bill that passed the House … More

    House Intelligence Committee Rejects FISA Fix in Close Vote

      House Democrats continued to block passage of a terrorist surveillance bill today, rejecting a measure by Rep. Heather Wilson (R-N.M.) to add the Senate-passed FISA bill to the fiscal 2009 Intelligence authorization bill. The amendment was defeated by one vote in the House Intelligence Committee, the latest proof that … More

    House Republicans Tie Earmark Moratorium to Gas Tax Relief

    Frustrated by inaction from Democrats on earmarks and gas prices, House Republicans are tying the two issues together in hopes of forcing Congress to act. Legislation introduced by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) would suspend the 18.4 cents per gallon federal gas tax for the summer. To avoid impacting the Highway … More

    Earmarks Still Dividing Republicans and Conservatives

    The House Appropriations Committee’s newest member, Rep. Jo Bonner (R-AL), visited The Heritage Foundation’s weekly blogger lunch today to pitch his new “Commitment to Reforming a Broken Process.” Bonner faced a hostile crowd of conservative bloggers who did not see why Bonner was willing to support a one-year moratorium on … More

    We're All In This Together... Whether You Like It or Not

    USA Today’s take on the mortgage mess posed a crucial question: “Should taxpayers in Vermont be asked to bail out home buyers in Nevada?” The nation’s No.1 newspaper went on to note: “The answer now taking shape in Washington appears to be, ‘Yes.’” But the multi-billion dollar question for taxpayers … More

    Senate Earmark Working Group Doesn't Go Far Enough

    The expectations were low for the Senate Fiscal Reform Working Group, so today’s proposal to bring greater transparency, debt reduction and oversight can’t be viewed as a total disappointment. It demonstrated that even some of the Republican Party’s biggest porkers acknowledge that the favor factory needs to be cleaned up. … More

    What If a Congressman Brought Home the Pork But Nobody Covered It?

    Well according to a new paper from National Bureau of Economic Research, he’d be a lot less likely to fight for waste the next time around. Here is what the abstract actually says: In this paper we estimate the impact of press coverage on citizen knowledge, politicians’ actions, and policy. … More

    Morning Bell: Why Earmarks Matter

    Despite “the most sweeping ethics reform since Watergate” and promises from the new House leadership to cut the number of earmarks in half, it appears the House is on its way again to absurd levels of pork-barrel spending. Roll Call reports that member earmark requests to the House Appropriations Committee … More

    Earmarks Lose Their Luster as More Members Take Pass on Pork

    The list of members of Congress who have given up earmarks seems to grow by the day. According to the Club for Growth’s tally, it now totals 33 House members and seven senators. And despite the setback last week in the Senate, that hasn’t dissuaded members from coming out for … More