-- $23 million for the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC) added by Rep. Jack Murtha, D-Pa. It has received more than half a billion dollars since 1992, but the Justice Department, which administers the program, wants to shut it down, calling its work "duplicative."
-- $4.8 million for the Jamaica Bay Unit of Gateway National Recreation Area sought by Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., described as "a wealth of history, nature and recreation."
-- $3 million for "The First Tee," added by House Democratic Whip James Clyburn of South Carolina. The program's Web site says its mission is to "promote character development and life-enhancing values through the game of golf." -- $1.6 million for the Allen Telescope Array, inserted by Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Calif., whose work is "dedicated to astronomical and simultaneous search for extra-terrestrial intelligence observations."
So far the Democrats' fiscal year 2008 appropriations bills would dish out a total of $24.7 billion for more than 12,000 earmarked expenditures like these.
"Democrats can't let go of their pork and keep inventing new ways to stop new earmark disclosure rules and bypass the old ones," DeMint said last week. "These shameful backroom deals are exactly why Congress continues to earn its lowest approval rating in history," he said. When will it stop? When the voters decide they have had enough.