December, 15th 2010

Good on Jim DeMint

– Liz Mair

I'm generally not a huge Jim DeMint booster (first of all, I've always been more a fan of Tom Coburn; second of all, DeMint has enough of those out there already; and third, my genuine sense is that DeMint has been a bit more concerned with fire-breathing rhetoric than action at certain junctures, and some of his rhetoric-- e.g., with regard to gay/single female schoolteachers I just don't like).

But, all that being said, this is a very good thing:

If you thought Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., went on interminably last week, just wait until you see what Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., has planned.

Democrats, having passed none of this fiscal year's appropriations, want to ram through the lame duck Senate a 2,000-page spending bill that no one had a chance to read. DeMint released the following statement yesterday. I've put the most important part in bold at the end:

“President Obama and Democrats have apparently learned nothing from this November’s election. This nearly 2,000-page omnibus filled with thousands of earmarks shows they are still determined to ram through as much big-government spending as they can in this lame duck session. Americans loudly demanded an end to the runaway spending, but Democrats are intent on raiding every taxpayer dollar that they can grab from the Treasury on their way out of power. This bill also funds the unconstitutional Obamacare law that Americans oppose and have asked Congress to fully repeal. Democrats haven’t given Republicans or the American people time to read the bill, but I’ll join with other Republican colleagues to force them to read it on the Senate floor.”

The reading could take 40 hours, some news outlets estimate. Last year, Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., forced the reading of an 800-page amendment on the Senate floor. The reading ended when Sanders, who had proposed the amendment, came to the floor to withdraw it.

Yesterday, John McCain tweeted out a bunch of earmarks included in the omnibus.  Here are some of my favorites:

#10. $247,000 – Virus free wine grapes in Washington State

#7. $349,000 – Swine waste management in North Carolina (My note/question: Is this literally taxpayer money for pig sh*t?  It sure sounds like it could be.)

#1. $300,000 for the Polynesian Voyaging Society in Hawaii

Lord only knows what else is in this, though I suspect we'll know soon enough, and it won't be pretty. [intro]



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