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10 Point Plan for Earmark Reform

As you know, I believe the earmark process must be completely reformed. The current system is neither transparent nor does it have checks and balances or accountability.

Here is a summary of my 10 point plan to reform the process. You will hear more about my plans for this in the future.

10 Point Plan for Earmark Reform

  1. Members must make public and fully disclose all earmark requests when they are submitted.
  2. Put every earmark in the text of the bill.
  3. The bill should fully disclose all earmarks with the requesting member(s), amounts, recipients and purpose at least 1 week before any bill containing earmarks is brought to the floor.
  4. All earmarks must be available for discussion at an open Congressional hearing.
  5. All earmarks for programs must be previously authorized by Congress.
  6. Earmarks must serve a federal interest and/or have a federal nexus.
  7. No earmarks outside of a member's own state.
  8. No earmarks to private entities without a competitive bidding process.
  9. No earmark can be added or increased in a conference committee to an amount greater than the amount passed in either the House or the Senate version of the bill.
  10. The dollar amount of any earmarks reduced by amendment or committee should go towards debt/deficit reduction and not be reallocated into other spending.

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