National Earmarks for Security?

John Campbell
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Posted: Sep 12, 2008 4:48 PM

It’s no secret that this Congress has had a problem passing appropriations bills on time.  Last year, we resorted to passing a giant omnibus bill at the last minute, and this year we likely will recess until after the election by passing a continuing resolution (CR), to fund the government at its current levels.  The good thing about a CR is that at least the government will continue operating at current levels rather than recklessly increase spending levels.

Over on the Senate side, Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) has introduced an amendment that would give the Dept. of Defense and Dept. of Energy the ability to disregard more than $5 billion in defense earmarks contained in the upcoming $612.5 billion defense policy measure ( S. 3001).

Senator Levin (D-MI), Chairman of the Senate Armed Services committee has objected to the amendment, and the bill has stalled in the Senate.  I applaud Senator DeMint and his colleagues including Senator Coburn (R-OK) for taking a stand on this issue. 

We have generals and admirals in the field who know what they need to fight and win.  It is ridiculous that we would opt to divert needed resources towards unwanted and at times ineffective earmarks, and in the end it hurts our ability to effectively provide for our national security.