House Republicans defend earmarks against Democrat threat to delete them?

posted at 4:20 pm on December 11, 2007 by Bryan

It’s bizarro world on the Hill, where liberal Democrat David Obey is threatening to cut spending, and allegedly conservative Republican John Boehner is laughing at the “idle threat.”

Hey Republicans, whatever happened to being the party of less spending? Reform? Cutting pork? Just wondering.

Appropriations Chairman David Obey (D-Wis.) is known for blowing his stack every once in awhile, and this time around Republicans are simply dismissing his latest rampage.

Republican House leaders are essentially calling Obey’s bluff one day after the irascible Wisconsin lawmaker threatened to pull every earmark from the remaining appropriations bills in order to cut an additional $11 billion and meet President Bush’s budget demands.

“This idle threat of taking away earmarks is just that,” said Majority Leader [sic] John A. Boehner (R-Ohio). “An idle threat.”

Boehner, who does not request earmarks for his Ohio district, was quick to say “I’m not here to say all earmarks are bad.” He realizes that hundreds of lawmakers on both sides of the aisle might revolt if their hometown projects are actually yanked from spending bills.

It’s sad that I have to point this out, but for Rep. Boehner, it might have been a smart strategic move to keep mum on the “idle threat” talk and let Obey present his cuts to his Democrat colleagues first. They would have defended the earmarks, not the Republican minority leader, and then the Republicans could have come around to point out that the Democrats are once again divided on pork and spending.

But nooooo. The Republican minority leader had to defend earmarks. And Sen. Trent Lott, who can’t start off on his retirement fast enough for me, had to join in.

One idea that seemed to be a nonstarter with senators was House Appropriations Chairman David Obey’s idea of stripping all earmarks from the spending bills.

“We’re not going to let them do a punitive thing like that,” said Sen. Trent Lott (R-Miss.). “Earmarks are justified and legitimate … but they do need to pass the smell test. I wouldn’t give up my earmarks.”

Yeah, we know. We know that Lott hates the Porkbusters, too. The feeling is mutual.

Why don’t we nominate a big-spending mushy liberal for president while we’re at it, too.

Update: Exit question–what would Mitt do to turn this party around?


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Make earmarks illegal.

Griz on December 11, 2007 at 4:23 PM

I know what Boehner is trying to say, but I totally agree he should have sit down, shut up and let the Democrats savage each other over the earmarks.

Nethicus on December 11, 2007 at 4:26 PM

Cut. The. Pork.

infidel on December 11, 2007 at 4:28 PM

It’s bizarro world on the Hill everywhere.

Republicans are defending pork against Democrat opposition, Republicans are looking like they will nominate somebody with near complete disregard of his conservative credentials, the leader of the Minutemen Project has endorsed an open borders advocate … could it get any more bizarre?

thirteen28 on December 11, 2007 at 4:29 PM

It’s not over yet. Neal Cavuto has got his voice back today.

Griz on December 11, 2007 at 4:32 PM

“Earmarks are justified and legitimate … but they do need to pass the smell test. I wouldn’t give up my earmarks.”

Proving Lott has lost his sense of smell and taste. I hope he doesn’t lose his sight before he finds the door to retirement.

Dusty on December 11, 2007 at 4:32 PM

The correct response to the threat to “pull every earmark from the remaining appropriations bills in order to cut an additional $11 billion and meet President Bush’s budget demands.”:

Great!

I miss the days of the Republican Revolution.

Laura on December 11, 2007 at 4:34 PM

It’s bizarro world on the Hill, where liberal Democrat David Obey is threatening to cut spending, and allegedly conservative Republican John Boehner is laughing at the “idle threat.”

Precisely! The only thing a sane John Boehner should have said is “Go right ahead”.

On a lighter note, it brings smiles to my face from a rerun of Welcome Back, Kotter, with Horshack responding to an official threat “g’ head, g’ head, g’ head”.

Entelechy on December 11, 2007 at 4:37 PM

I rest my case…

The Republican leadership is part of the problem, not part of the solution.

Fully 1/3 of the American electorate… many of them Conservative… are now registered as “Unaffiliated”…

This is why.

Romeo13 on December 11, 2007 at 4:37 PM

The front page logo is p e r f e c t.

Limerick on December 11, 2007 at 4:46 PM


I rest my case…

The Republican leadership is part of the problem, not part of the solution.

Fully 1/3 of the American electorate… many of them Conservative… are now registered as “Unaffiliated”…

This is why.
Romeo13 on December 11, 2007 at 4:37 PM

Thanks ROMEO, NAIL ON HEAD.

[footnote]I was wrong, Cavuto’s voice is fading fast.

Griz on December 11, 2007 at 4:46 PM

It’s like they’re retarded.

Griz on December 11, 2007 at 4:47 PM

Mushy liberal for Pres? If Evangelicals get their way, that’s exactly what will happen. Oh, wait. Never mind. There’s no way Huckabee could ever beat Hillary. Here’s an anti-pork candidate…
http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=YmMxYTUyYzA1YTk2YzE5NGVmNjc0OGFjYWJmNzMzNjI=&p=1

davenp35 on December 11, 2007 at 4:50 PM

Why don’t we nominate a big-spending mushy liberal for president while we’re at it, too.

So, really, what do we do when the party nominates Huckabee for president. Do we wait around for a decade for the inevitable reallignment?

I’d be aching for a new third party; I think the Federalist Party would be a great name. Much more libertarian than the Reps, but strong on defense and foreign policy and pro-life.

But that ain’t gonna happen. So in the mean time, we’re stuck with tax and spend Republicans in the House and two liberals running for President.

We’re screwed.

Nessuno on December 11, 2007 at 4:50 PM

It’s like they’re retarded.

Griz on December 11, 2007 at 4:47 PM

FTFY

OINK! OINK! OINK! Friggin’ RINO tools. We oughta send a bunch of those cheapo rubber pig noses to DC so they can wear them to votes.

Bad Candy on December 11, 2007 at 4:50 PM

What Mitt would do, or should do, is what I hope Rudy and/or John and/or Fred would do:

V. E. T. O.

Always Right on December 11, 2007 at 4:57 PM

Fully 1/3 of the American electorate… many of them Conservative… are now registered as “Unaffiliated”…

This is why.

Romeo13 on December 11, 2007 at 4:37 PM

A b s o l u t e l y – I have been calling myself “Unaffiliated” for a little over two years. Which means I vote for a conservative or I don’t vote at all. Here in Texas, I did not vote for Rick Perry.

Harpoon on December 11, 2007 at 5:15 PM

The Napoleon maxim still stands.

Never interrupt your opponent while they are making a mistake.

gabriel sutherland on December 11, 2007 at 5:15 PM

That is an extraordinary endorsement of Romney by the editors at NRO– not because I disagree with their assessment of the man, as far as it went, but because they make no mention of the primary issues facing our country, namely our security, and Romney’s qualifications to deal with them. What about Iraq/Iran, al-Qaeda, international terrorism, nuclear proliferation, etc. Reading that endorsement it seemed as if 9-11 didn’t happen. What Twin Towers?

Why didn’t they address Romney’s ability to be commander-in-chief, and chief SOB when needed? I’ve got supplies stored in the basement. Why? They must be crazy over at NRO.

JiangxiDad on December 11, 2007 at 5:17 PM

The world has gone truly mad!

conservnut on December 11, 2007 at 5:28 PM

We need to elect people like Allen West to congress. Remember the Army LTC who fired a round into a weapon clearing barrel in Iraq to scare an Iraqi which resulted in obtaining information to prevent an attack on his soldiers? He’s running for congress from FL. Donate. I did.

Allen West for Congress

O-Dub on December 11, 2007 at 5:38 PM

time for a new party?

offroadaz on December 11, 2007 at 5:42 PM

Not for nothin, Huck’s congressional chairman is Don “My Money” Young (R-Porkville, AK)

CP on December 11, 2007 at 5:50 PM

Proof positive that every time Lott opens his mouth, he swallows his face.
Boehner is just one more example of what suffering from lobel rectalitis,(head in a$$syndrome),can bring about.

leanright on December 11, 2007 at 6:14 PM

I’m confused. Special Report/Fox News reported this very differently.

They said that Boehner was egging on the Democrats to get rid of Earmarks since 60% of them are theirs anyway, and Fox went on to quote Boehner saying that Obey was trying to “blackmail” the President by threatening to dump his entire budget which includes funding the Iraq War.

That is quite different from threatening to “cut spending”. Isn’t it?

Buy Danish on December 11, 2007 at 6:55 PM

House Republicans defend earmarks against Democrat threat to delete them?

What a terrible thing to have lost one’s mind. Or not to have a mind at all. How true that is.
- Dan Quayle

MB4 on December 11, 2007 at 7:05 PM

It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly native criminal class except Congress.
- Mark Twain

MB4 on December 11, 2007 at 7:07 PM

I hope Bush would veto the bill and rip both Dems and Reps.

danking70 on December 11, 2007 at 7:31 PM

Democrats: evil
Republicans: stupid

Tzetzes on December 11, 2007 at 7:34 PM

I mostly don’t agree with Obey, but I’m beginning to respect him, like I do Feingold. They both seem to be rational–however much I disagree with them. On the other hand, Murtha and Pelosi are pointless hacks, like Trent Lott.

I don’t think I’ve got quite the right word to explain my disgust for Murtha, Pelosi, and Lott and my appreciation for Obey, Feingold, and deMint. Is it integrity? or what?

thuja on December 11, 2007 at 7:54 PM

“We’re not going to let them do a punitive thing like that,” said Sen. Trent Lott (R-Miss.).

Billions of dollars of taxpayer money on the line and the important thing here is how it affects those poor downtrodden congressmen.

Resolute on December 11, 2007 at 8:13 PM

I thought the House Republicans were the ones holding fast to the conservative agenda, as opposed to the senate repubs. Great, they’ve all flipped.

Over the door of the House cloakroom is there a sign saying “You will be assimilated, love DNC” ?

Mallard T. Drake on December 11, 2007 at 8:18 PM

I have heard but not verified that John Kline Minnesota stated that he refused earmarks for his district.

If this is true did he really refuse or did he fail to get any?

I hope someone DID have the guts to standup against these loony pigs.

Does anyone know the truth here?

allrsn on December 11, 2007 at 9:30 PM

So, anyone think we could vote in a GOP President, while not casting a single vote nationally for Republicans in Congress? Just a thought.

Jaibones on December 11, 2007 at 11:22 PM

Hmmm… Wonder why this part of Boehner’s quote didn’t make Politico’s article…

“I don’t think it’s sustainable on his part,” Boehner said. “I wonder if he asked the speaker of the House or the majority leader of the House whether they thought that was an appropriate direction to go in since they happen to be the members with the most earmarks in these bills.”

Fox News

Gianni on December 11, 2007 at 11:45 PM