Republicans Screech About Their OWN Earmarks in Spending Bill (Video)
December 15, 2010
(ChattahBox Political News)—Washington was treated to a mass display of Republican earmark hypocrisy today, after the unveiling of the $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill that will keep the government going for the next year. Hilariously, a good share of the $8 billion in earmark spending was requested by the “no-earmark” Republican Senators, including Mitch McConnell (KY), Lindsey Graham (SC) and John Thune (SD). Hahah, so since they all recently joined in a charade vote of a no earmarks pledge, they spent today spinning bullshit and spewing phony outrage at all of the pork in the spending bill that they put there. Even funnier, when Republican earmark hypocrite Sen John Cornyn (R-TX) was confronted today on Fox News, of all places, with his $16 million in earmarks, after railing against the pork in the spending bill, he hemmed and hawed, and squirmed. When asked to defend his own earmarks, Cornyn responded, “I’m not going to…” As entertaining as it all is, the Republican Senators are more concerned with political games and establishing their tea party bona fides, than ensuring the lights stay on in Washington, and as a result, they are threatening to filibuster the spending bill, which could lead to a government shutdown. Merry Christmas!
Sen. Cornyn was put on the spot by Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” with Bill Hemmer. Cornyn started to slam the spending bill, as a pork-filled monstrosity. “It’s really shocking and it’s profoundly disrespectful,” he said.
But to his credit, Hemmer actually practiced some journalism and held Cornyn accountable for his blatant hypocrisy. I’m sure Hemmer already received a memo from his superiors to refrain from veering off the GOP talking points in the future.
“Now, you yourself have asked for earmarks, too, according to this list, some 16 million for your home state,” Hemmer said. “Can you defend that, Senator?”
“Well, I believe I can, but I’m not going to, because I’m going to vote against this bill,” said Cornyn.
Haha, OK. So, what’s the deal, Hemmer asked–do you support earmarks or what?
“But you favor earmarks is what you’re saying,” Hemmer said.
“I do not,” Cornyn insisted. “I think we need an earmark moratorium — which I voted for — for two years, until we fix this broken system. Because it’s become a symbol.”
“I got it, but I’m confused, then,” Hemmer said. “Why is there $16 million in requests from you listed here? Is that not true?”
“Early on in the year I did request earmarks that I think are individually defensible,” Cornyn said. “And if we had a debate on the floor, I think I could show how they help our men and women in uniform fight two different wars.”
And then there is this bit from the Washington Post on McConnell’s hypocrisy.
“Yet the legislation includes provisions requested this year by McConnell, including $650,000 for a genetic technology center at the University of Kentucky, according to an analysis of the bill by Taxpayers for Common Sense, a nonpartisan watchdog.”
Saying he was now “vigorously in opposition” to the legislation, McConnell said “Tuesday that rushed consideration of the bill “here on Christmas Eve” compelled him to try to block the bill through a filibuster. “I’m going to vote against things that arguably would benefit my state. I do not think this is the appropriate way to run the Senate,” he said.”
“But McConnell, like other new earmark opponents, stopped short of asking for his projects to be removed from the bill.”
You don’t say.
Well, at least one Senator decided to adhere to the GOP’s no-earmark pledge by having his earmarks stripped from the omnibus bill. Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) told Talking Points Memo that he requested that his targeted state spending be removed, before the bill was brought up.
“People have the right to do whatever they want,” he said. “I just felt my own personal moral obligation to do that.”
By-the-way, the earmarks in the omnibus bill represent less than 1 percent of the total bill. And earmark spending is down 75 percent since Republicans controlled the Senate.
Watch Cornyn squirm on Fox News: