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Remember all those grand promises by the tea party-backed Republicans who promised to put an end to wasteful spending and pork-barrel earmarks?
Just more hypocritical political posturing.
While talking the big plan to be fiscally responsible the Republican freshmen have packed a huge $553 billion spending bill with millions of pet defense projects for their home districts.
Yep. Pork barrel is still alive in the halls of Congress and the pigs at the trough are the ones voters sent to Washington to end the wasteful practice.
Of course, Republicans claim the money for the projects aren’t pork. Of course not. Pork is when the money is spent by the other guys in someone else’s district. If it’s in your own district it’s necessary.
None of the projects were included in the defense budget submitted to Congress by the Obama administration.
For example, freshman GOP Rep. Bobby Shilling put in $2.5 million for weapons and munitions advanced technology for the Quad City Manufacturing Lab at Rock Island Arsenal, which just happens to be in his district.
During his campaign against Democrat Phil Hare last year, Schilling criticized Hare for adding money to defense budgets for the same facility.
GOP frosh Vicky Hartzler of Missouri packed the bill with $20 million for “mixed conventional load capability for Air Force bombers,” for Whiteman Air Force Base in her district.
Hartlzler backed the GOP moratorium on earmarks during her campaign. Now she says she didn’t think the moratorium applied to defense spending.
Republican Steven Palazzo used anti-pork barrel spending rhetoric and tea party backing to beat Democratic conservative Gene Taylor in Mississippi. He added $10 million to buy land to expand a National Guard facility in his district and another $19.9 million to “ship preliminary design and feasibility studies” at Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula — also part of his district.
Tom Schatz, president of Citizens Against Government Waste, says his group will be studying the bill to uncover all the examples of pork. The millions could add up to billions.
As the late Sen. Everett McKinley Dirksen used to say: “A billion here; a billion there. Pretty soon, we’re talking about real money.”