Spending Bills Still Stuffed With Earmarks -- Democrats Had Vowed To Curtail Pet Projects
The $555 billion annual "omnibus" spending bill approved by Congress this week and the $459 billion defense bill passed last month collectively contain more than 11,000 earmarks, despite Democrats' vow to use their first year in the majority to slash the number of such pet projects.
The House required lawmakers for the first time to sign their names on their earmarks, identify the beneficiaries and locations, and certify that neither they nor their immediate families have a financial stake in the spending. But Democrats' good intentions came undone in the Senate, which did not trim earmarks as severely and tinkered with the language of the rules, limiting disclosure only to the authors' names . . . .