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Republicans Bring Back Earmarks

Shame. Shame. Shame.

Republicans are back up to their old tricks of bringing home the bacon. So sad. In 2010 House Republicans agreed to end earmarking – the practice of stuffing massive spending bills with pork projects in the home district – but that commitment to fiscal sanity vanished on Wednesday when the GOP caucus voted thumbs up to allowing these earmarks to resume.

Here’s what’s really depressing. Our friend Rep Matt Rosendale of Montana tells us the caucus vote was:

      • 55 supporting the prohibition of earmarks
      • 152 opposing prohibition

Three out of four were in favor of playing pigs at the trough.

One Republican member boasted in the caucus debate that through earmarks he brought money back to his district to buy a fire truck. These are the people that are supposed to lead us back to fiscal sanity?

Kevin McCarthy – who is in line to be the House Speaker – did not oppose the measure.

Oh, and here’s an even more pathetic development. Republicans won’t call their special projects “earmarks” anymore. Now they will use the euphemism “community development projects.”

Many Republicans we have talked to said earmarks are fiscally trivial. So wasting billions of dollars is justified because we spend trillions of dollars we can’t afford. As the late great Senator Tom Coburn often reminded us: “Earmarks are the gateway drug to out-of-control spending.” And now they are bipartisan.

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