Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Pork: a terrorist's friend

From The Specter of Pork Barrel Homeland Security:

Word has it that Homeland Security appropriators may allow earmarks onto their funding bills for the first time in the short history of the Department of Homeland Security. By ending this moratorium on earmarks, Congress would open the door to pork barrel spending—just as the 9/11 Commission warned. Earmarks would take funding from building a truly national homeland security system and addressing the highest priority risks and divert it to the special interests of individual legislators.

If House Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Harold Rogers (R-KY) and his Senate counterpart Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH) lift the ban on earmarks, the result will be more spending that makes America less safe. That is a bad idea, and Congress should reject it...

...Encouraging politicians and lobbyists to make sure that their special interest or locality “gets theirs” instead of allowing DHS to set funding priorities that reflect the best assessment of national security needs will make things worse. The worst possible solution would be to allow individual members of Congress to earmark their own pet projects. More and more money would be diverted from the true priorities to the districts of those with political influence.


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