Sunday, July 8, 2007

Earmarks Again

FYI The House was in recess last week. And it has been revealed that the “Do Nothing Congress” has at least done one thing. So far this year, 32,684 earmark requests have been submitted to the House Appropriations Committee. This committee is chaired by David R. Obey (D-WI) who attempted to further restrict debate on individual Earmarks by proposing that Earmarks only be added after the bill was in conference. Fortunately the proposal was defeated and Earmarks will still be subject of a Floor Vote. Mr. Obey’s idea would have been another backtrack on the promise to the voters that Congress would be more open and transparent.

Thirty-Two Thousand, Six Hundred Eighty-Four! That’s a number that doesn’t look any better no matter how it’s printed. With numbers like this, is it any wonder that the approval rating for Congress (currently about 25%) is at an all time low? Even lower than the President’s approval rating (currently about 30%).[Ratings from Real Clear Politics Poll Average] So many politicians are fond of saying “We can do better”, but as the long ago Burger King commercial asked, “Where’s the beef?”

Ironically the best quote came from Mr. Obey as noted by Washington Post on-line editorial, 32,684
"Members should be more than ATM machines for their district. They should be policy setters for the country."

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