Earmarks: The Public Cares

Encouraging news in an opinion piece from the Wall Street Journal by Pat Toomey(former member of the US House and President of the Club for Growth) today.  A recent survey concludes that most voters would favor a congressional candidate that cuts spending over one that increases spending, even if it means no pork for their district. 

Some of Pat Toomey’s comments:

Unfortunately, too many politicians are refusing to listen. The vast majority of congressmen are just as wedded to bloated budgets as ever. Part of the problem is that wasteful spending is embedded in the congressional culture. Congressional freshmen are instructed by leadership to seek out earmarks and flaunt their success back home. They are indoctrinated to believe that seeking and securing earmarks — no matter how silly or wasteful — is a congressman’s official duty and a surefire path to re-election.

And elsewhere Pat mentions the fact that congressmen listen more to the special interests that shower campaign money on them than they do their own constituents.  There’s a big surprise for you.

Earmarks have to go.  I know that this is an bipartisan problem… we need to support candidates that will end this overt system of bribery once and for all.  How anyone can support earmarks with a straight face is beyond me.  This is nothing less than corruption.

I was thrilled when Neal Smith was booted out by voters in 1994.  His campaign was largely based on how much extra money he brought back into the state for each dollar that Iowa taxpayers paid out.  He was proud of that.  I was appalled that bringing more money in than was going out was “good”.  That meant that some other states were subsidizing Iowans, and though there may be folks in other states that don’t mind the rest of the country taking care of them, I don’t think Iowans like to see themselves as charity cases.  And it appears that people are ready to start holding politicians accountable.

Everyone’s watching.  Time to stop earmarks.  Now.

About the Author

Mr. Smith is the Publisher of The Conservative Reader. He is Partner/Owner of Ambrosia Web Technology as well as a Systems Architect for Wells Fargo. Art hold a degree in Computer Science from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, and is a political blogger at the Des Moines Register. Art's views are purely his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Wells Fargo.

 

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