« NASA climate data found to be of poor quality | Main | "there is tyranny afoot and it must be confronted" »

House Democrats Find Religion On Earmarks

House Democrats, clearly feeling the heat from dissatisfied and very angry voters, tried to put a populist fig leaf on the naked earmarking that has plagued the budget process for over a decade. Their ploy, introduced yesterday, would end all earmarks given to for profit companies.

WASHINGTON -- House Democratic leaders on Wednesday banned budget earmarks to private industry, ending a practice that has steered billions of dollars in no-bid contracts to companies and set off corruption scandals.

The ban is the most forceful step yet in a three-year effort in Congress to curb abuses in the use of earmarks, which allow individual lawmakers to award financing for pet projects to groups and businesses, many of them campaign donors.

However, Republicans immediately raised the stakes and proposed a ban on all earmarks:

A day after House Democrats announced a ban on earmarks for private companies, their Republican counterparts hope to dramatically up the ante with a unilateral prohibition on all targeted spending projects.

If approved, the Republican policy would restrict GOP lawmakers from sponsoring any earmarks at all -- broadening the Democratic ban to cover earmarks for nonprofit entities and tax and tariff breaks approved through the Ways and Means Committee.

"When Republicans take back the House, we will rein in out-of-control federal spending and bring fundamental change to the process by which Congress spends American taxpayers' money," according to a statement from Republican leaders.

The minority is eager to protect what it views as a potent political advantage over Democrats on spending. And many -- including an apparently united GOP leadership -- are rallying behind the effort to one-up the Democrats on earmarks.

Life after Murtha is taking an interesting turn in the House. And for anyone that questioned the impact of the Tea Party movement these proposals should put all doubts to rest. Washington is running scared on the spending issue and clearly wants to stay ahead of the pitchforks.


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Comments (13)

This is all well and good u... (Below threshold)

This is all well and good until they (the House Representatives--Democrat and Republican) attempt to get around this by calling it something other than "earmark." And it's only a ban on budget earmarks, which means they'll simply write them into other bills instead. (Can anyone say "stimulus"?)

"Washington is running scar... (Below threshold)

"Washington is running scared on the spending issue and clearly wants to stay ahead of the pitchforks."

Pitchforks have reach.

"Life after Murtha is takin... (Below threshold)

"Life after Murtha is taking an interesting turn in the House."

I'd imagine that Porky Murtha is spinning in his grave.

The idea that you'd ban ear... (Below threshold)
Lurking Observer:

The idea that you'd ban earmarks from private business, but nothing else, is another example of wolves in sheep's clothing.

So, universities and non-profit organizations would still be able to get earmarks. What does that suggest about something like, say, the Annenberg Challenge?

Lurking Observer makes a go... (Below threshold)

Lurking Observer makes a good point.

I imagine govt. unions are thrilled by this, let alone acorn.

Lurking observer is right. ... (Below threshold)
jim m:

Lurking observer is right. I thought of the same thing when I read it. Non-profit foundations, unions, universities, all with radical left ideologies and agendas are all exempted from this.

In fact this only creates the opportunity for not-for-profit foundations to be forms for the sole purpose of funneling money to businesses that the dems want to give kickbacks to.

There's nothing about corruption that the dems wouldn't like to make even more corrupt.

Think of Murtha, who turned down an AbScam bribe because it wasn't big enough. This would have enabled him to make direct personal profit from his earmarks. What's not to like?

Steve Green is a delusional... (Below threshold)

Steve Green is a delusional douchebag incapable of understanding English.

Stevie always makes intelle... (Below threshold)

Stevie always makes intellectual and thought provoking statements. Hahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!
Wizbang keeps him around for 'the entertainment factor'.

Steven Green: Far ... (Below threshold)
Lurking Observer:

Steven Green:

Far from opposing the end of corporate earmarks, it seems to me that this doesn't go far enough.

How about eliminating all earmarks?

It's like lobbyists in this administration. The problem isn't that they've cut back on lobbyists being employed in the administration, it's that they have any at all.

Why go for half-measures?

When you go for half-measures, and ones that only benefit your own side of the ledger, then it appears that you're not interested in reform, so much as stacking the deck in your own favor.

Speaking of earmarks.. Whos... (Below threshold)

Speaking of earmarks.. Whos keepin track of dumbos flappers?

Chef Obama cont... (Below threshold)
Chef Obama continues a basically centrist policy menu
Your definition of "centrist" comes right out of 1984.
"Today the House Republican... (Below threshold)

"Today the House Republicans promised a one-year pause in earmarks, not a permanent ban."


In an election year when there is a deep resession the Democrats are spending like there's no tomorrow. This is after having taken over the House, Senate and Presidency on the promise to reform spending. It seems that Republicans have come to their senses and returned to fiscal conservatism in time to offer a choice to the electorate.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? GET RI... (Below threshold)


If you do something like that, where is Michelle going to get her inflated university salary for doing nothing? Some one will have to support jugears when he is kicked out of office (if he is not in prison).






Follow Wizbang

Follow Wizbang on FacebookFollow Wizbang on TwitterSubscribe to Wizbang feedWizbang Mobile


Send e-mail tips to us:

[email protected]

Fresh Links


Section Editor: Maggie Whitton

Editors: Jay Tea, Lorie Byrd, Kim Priestap, DJ Drummond, Michael Laprarie, Baron Von Ottomatic, Shawn Mallow, Rick, Dan Karipides, Michael Avitablile, Charlie Quidnunc, Steve Schippert

Emeritus: Paul, Mary Katherine Ham, Jim Addison, Alexander K. McClure, Cassy Fiano, Bill Jempty, John Stansbury, Rob Port

In Memorium: HughS

All original content copyright © 2003-2010 by Wizbang®, LLC. All rights reserved. Wizbang® is a registered service mark.

Powered by Movable Type Pro 4.361

Hosting by ServInt

Ratings on this site are powered by the Ajax Ratings Pro plugin for Movable Type.

Search on this site is powered by the FastSearch plugin for Movable Type.

Blogrolls on this site are powered by the MT-Blogroll.

Temporary site design is based on Cutline and Cutline for MT. Graphics by Apothegm Designs.

Author Login

Terms Of Service

DCMA Compliance Notice

Privacy Policy