Thursday, May 08, 2008

Clueless House Republican

Via Heritage's Blog: Earmarks Still Dividing Republicans and Conservatives (emphasis added):
The House Appropriations Committee’s newest member, Rep. Jo Bonner (R-AL), visited The Heritage Foundation’s weekly blogger lunch today to pitch his new “Commitment to Reforming a Broken Process.” Bonner faced a hostile crowd of conservative bloggers who did not see why Bonner was willing to support a one-year moratorium on earmarks but refused to back an all out ban. Bonner responded with a number of points, including:

1) there is no good definition of what an earmark is;
2) the system can be fixed with transparency;
3) a one-year moratorium is enough time to fix the system.

When pressed on the politics of the issue, Bonner explained he did not believe it was necessary for GOPers to adopt an all out ban in order to differentiate themselves from Democrats this fall.
Point 1 is nonsense. From the Office of Management and Budget:


For the purposes of this data collection the definition of an earmark is as follows:
Earmarks are funds provided by the Congress for projects or programs where the congressional direction (in bill or report language) circumvents the merit-based or competitive allocation process, or specifies the location or recipient, or otherwise curtails the ability of the Administration to control critical aspects of the funds allocation process.


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