Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Earmarks and Obama's Spending Bill
Of course, Obama was right to sign this "admittedly imperfect bill". His main priority was to get the bill enacted, and putting those earmarks in the bill was the price he had to pay to get the 60 votes necessary to pass this legislation. He had to satisfy those few Senators who provided the key swing votes to enact the spending bill. However, by far the most important thing Obama said today has hardly been mentioned by any of the pundits or commentators. Obama said that the earmarks represent "roughly 1% of this bill -- $7 billion out of $491 billion -- yet they occupy 99% of the discussion." That's a highly crucial point. Obama gave up a small amount of ground in order to get this vital package enacted. He also announced that, like The Terminator, he will be back later to institute some pretty sweeping earmark reforms.