Despite promises by the Obama administration his $1.2 trillion government spending plan will be free of earmarks and pet projects, The Politico reports today the bill is so laden with lard the Capitol may have to be rezoned as a rendering plant.
According to The Politico, special interests like casinos and peach growers will likely be getting a cut of taxpayer cash, despite the fact their proposed projects create few jobs. Groups like the U.S. Conference of Mayors are also dialing for dollars, making requests like half a million dollars to build a dog park in an affluent California town. You can check out the USCOM proposals for yourself at StimulusWatch.org.
The Senate bill also includes $70 million to “support supercomputer activities, as they relate to climate research.” $70 million to provide jobs for unemployed climate modelers seems even more unsavory when, not only are there virtually no unemployed climate modelers, many of the groups that will get the $70 million just happen to be located in the state represented by the chair of the appropriations subcommittee, Maryland Democrat Barbara Mikulski.
The bill also includes $250 million to make repairs at NASA’s Johnson Space Center and other facilities. The Houston area is currently enjoying a booming economy and below-average unemployment, but Texas Republican Kay Bailey Hutchison is an appropriations committee member planning a run for Texas governor.