AP: About Obama’s “no pork” assertion…

posted at 8:55 am on February 10, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Barack Obama made the claim at least twice yesterday that the stimulus bill had no pork in it.   In his prime-time press conference, Obama almost angrily rejected the notion that the Generational Theft Act contained pork:

But what I — what I’ve been concerned about is some of the language that’s been used suggesting that this is full of pork and this is wasteful government spending, so on and so forth. …

But when they start characterizing this as pork without acknowledging that there are no earmarks in this package — something, again, that was pretty rare over the last eight years — then you get a feeling that maybe we’re playing politics instead of actually trying to solve problems for the American people.

And earlier in the day, during his Elkhart town-hall meeting:

And, listen, I know that there are a lot of folks out there who’ve been saying, “Oh, this is pork, and this is money that’s going to be wasted,” and et cetera, et cetera. Understand, this bill does not have a single earmark in it, which is unprecedented for a bill of this size, does not have a single earmark in it.

In a literal sense, that’s true — but only because the stimulus bill is essentially an Omnibus Earmark Package.  It consists entirely of local and state projects that would normally only get funded as earmarks on other appropriations.  Even the Associated Press calls shenanigans on this claim:

THE FACTS: There are no “earmarks,” as they are usually defined, inserted by lawmakers in the bill. Still, some of the projects bear the prime characteristics of pork – tailored to benefit specific interests or to have thinly disguised links to local projects.

For example, the latest version contains $2 billion for a clean-coal power plant with specifications matching one in Mattoon, Ill., $10 million for urban canals, $2 billion for manufacturing advanced batteries for hybrid cars, and $255 million for a polar icebreaker and other “priority procurements” by the Coast Guard.

And how did Obama sell this to the good folks in Elkhart?  By using the same, old, tired pork-barrel pledges he supposedly rejected:

Obama told his Elkhart audience that Indiana will benefit from work on “roads like U.S. 31 here in Indiana that Hoosiers count on.” He added: “And I know that a new overpass downtown would make a big difference for businesses and families right here in Elkhart.”

That’s pork, no matter what Obama calls it.  The stimulus package contains nothing but porky, wasteful spending, most of which has little chance of creating jobs within the first year, when jobs will be most needed.  Obama even sells it like pork.  If it looks like a pig, acts like a pig, gets sold as a pig, and stinks of pork, it’s not difficult to identify it.


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The Bush administration tried at least 17 times to stop the Fannie/Freddie corruption with McCain sending a bill up in 05.

Which the democrats struck down like all attempts in reining
in Fannie/Freddie:

Timeline shows Bush, McCain warning Dems of financial and housing crisis; meltdown
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMnSp4qEXNM
VIDEO:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMnSp4qEXNM

No attempts from the democrats what-so-ever to stop this
massive corruption that has gutted our economy.

Baxter Greene on February 10, 2009 at 4:07 PM

Jenfidel on February 10, 2009 at 3:59 PM

The list of what democrats have done to sell out this country for personal gain is quite long.

Baxter Greene on February 10, 2009 at 4:08 PM

If the idiot says just one word, you know that word is a lie.

If he says just 2 words, you know the 2 words are a lie

If he sasys just 3 words…..

notagool on February 10, 2009 at 4:13 PM

The f**king left has created its own dictionary and way to tell time (remember Pelosi’s first 100 hours?).

madmonkphotog on February 10, 2009 at 4:21 PM

getalife -

You still have not answered my question from yesterday.

What’s the crisis?

rockmom on February 10, 2009 at 2:29 PM

rockmom, that is THE question of the week, month, year!
Note that it’s met with only the sound of crickets.

Jenfidel on February 10, 2009 at 4:55 PM

how is this reconciled with schumer saying there is pork? Will anyone ask them about it?

rob verdi on February 10, 2009 at 5:03 PM

It passed.

Move your outrage to the tarp crap sandwich.

Keep in mind, these are hail mary’s trying to clean up a inherited economic disaster.

Arguing that nothing is your party’s fault is like arguing with children never taking the blame for anything.

Grow up.

getalife on February 10, 2009 at 1:10 PM

I often hear and see this kind of back and forth from both sides. When I do, it seems people are more concerned with the who…or whether they have a ‘D’ or an ‘R’ after their name. To accurately assess then correct a problem, it is far more important to address the what.

Now we can quibble over the share of the blame (banks, wall street, us, politicians) but to what ends? The unnerving fact is still this:

Too much borrowing and then spending way beyond those means got us to this point. What our government is now about to do to answer this is borrow and spend on the most massive scale in world history.

Are you really prepared to give support to that kind of action?

Also, I would appreciate if you would consider explaining yourself my question to you posed several times now. I have asked you in several threads (including this one) to no avail. Thanks.

anuts on February 10, 2009 at 6:01 PM

Timeline shows Bush, McCain warning Dems of financial and housing crisis; meltdown
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMnSp4qEXNM
VIDEO:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMnSp4qEXNM
No attempts from the democrats what-so-ever to stop this massive corruption that has gutted our economy.

Democrats should apologize for trusting the Fannie and Freddie people, just as Republicans should apologize for trusting the Bush administration.

Constantine on February 10, 2009 at 6:24 PM

just as Republicans should apologize for trusting the Bush administration.

Constantine on February 10, 2009 at 6:24 PM

No.
I won’t.
President Bush never lied to us (unlike Zerobama) and he did what he thought was right.
He has a record to be proud of, as do we who supported him.

Jenfidel on February 10, 2009 at 7:26 PM

The “no pork” assertion by obama was not the first lie that he told but was certainly one of the biggest!

jsanderssr on February 10, 2009 at 7:35 PM

What do you expect electing a congressman President? Congressmen know how to bring home the bacon to local consticuencies. That is all Obama is doing, just being a congressman.

paulsur on February 10, 2009 at 9:03 PM

anuts on February 10, 2009 at 6:01 PM

I agree with your assessment of how we should look at solving the immediate question: “What should we best do from here to improve our economic prospects?”

However, I disagree that we should say, “bygones!” and make no attempt to determine who and what caused this.

If you somehow manage to break up a mafia “insurance” operation, do you simply let the mafia off with no punishment?

If we do not determine the root cause of the problem, we cannot in the future effectively punish and avoid the people and policies that caused the problem.

Two separate issues, but both need resolution.

Troll Feeder on February 10, 2009 at 9:22 PM

If it looks like a pig, acts like a pig, gets sold as a pig, and stinks of pork, it’s not difficult to identify it.

What if you put lipstick on it?

Paco on February 10, 2009 at 9:54 PM

With every passing day, I hate this bastard more. I have to stop now, lest I say something that has the Feds wanting to talk to me.

Midas on February 10, 2009 at 10:35 PM

For a wonderful relief from today’s Porkuluza, listen to Grue in the attik. You’ll be amazed.

Entelechy on February 10, 2009 at 11:06 PM

Well I guess Obama has to speak out against and belittle Wall Street types now as well, since their lack of faith in his Porkulus plan is sending our market and markets across the world back into free-fall status.

I guess the world isn’t sold on King Hopenchange.

Mr Purple on February 10, 2009 at 11:47 PM

So it works like this.
Pork” in government spending is also know as “Earmarks”.

Earmarks are things tagged onto a bill that have nothing to do with what the bill is about.

So if we have a bill that is about “nothing specific” and take all those “Earmarks” AKA PORK, bundled together and call it a “Stimulus Bill”, then there is no PORK in the bill because no one is tagging on there “Wish ListPORK (Earmarks)?

And we have to have a Tax Cheat in charge of the IRS to come up with this “plan”?

We are so so $crewed

DSchoen on February 11, 2009 at 12:16 AM

His middle name isn’t Hussein.

It’s Ham.

Also Biblical.

profitsbeard on February 11, 2009 at 1:09 AM

I thought muslims hated pork.

IlikedAUH2O on February 11, 2009 at 6:30 AM

Baxter Greene or ANYONE

Why did the Republicans let the ‘Detestable Edsel Moron’ party tie the financial meltdown around their necks?

Ie. “There is enough blame to go around.”

IlikedAUH2O on February 11, 2009 at 6:42 AM

But when they start characterizing this as pork without acknowledging that there are no earmarks in this package — something, again, that was pretty rare over the last eight years — then you get a feeling that maybe we’re playing politics instead of actually trying to solve problems for the American people.

Buck Ofama

Someone, anyone – tell me the last time we had a President that was so full of shit that he could say stupid things like this in public with a straight face?

Yes, Clinton said stupid things like this every day, but almost never with a straight face.

Jaibones on February 11, 2009 at 8:53 AM

Walking Eagle

President Obama was invited to address a major gathering of the American Indian Nation in Arizona. He spoke for almost an hour on his future plans for increasing every Native American’s present standard of living. He referred to his career as Senator of Illinois, how he had signed “YES” for every Indian issue that came to his desk for approval. Although the President was vague on the details of his plan, he seemed most enthusiastic about his future ideas for helping his “red brothers.”

At the conclusion of his speech, the Tribes presented the President with a plaque inscribed with his new Indian name — Walking Eagle. The proud President then departed in his motorcade, waving to the crowds.

A news reporter later inquired to the group of chiefs of how they aome to select the new name given to the President. They explained that Walking Eagle is the name given to a bird so full of s**t it can no longer fly.

la.rt.wngr on February 11, 2009 at 10:41 AM

President Bush never lied to us (unlike Zerobama) and he did what he thought was right.
He has a record to be proud of, as do we who supported him.
Jenfidel on February 10, 2009 at 7:26 PM

Congratulations on successfully avoiding the news for about 8 years. The most egregious lies were about going to war in Iraq, which he knew was no threat to us and had nothing to do with 9/11. Over 4,500 American lives and over $600 billion later, we’re less safe than we were before.

Obama lied about what?

Constantine on February 11, 2009 at 6:31 PM

Congratulations on successfully avoiding the news for about 8 years. The most egregious lies were about going to war in Iraq, which he knew was no threat to us and had nothing to do with 9/11. Over 4,500 American lives and over $600 billion later, we’re less safe than we were before.

Obama lied about what?

Constantine on February 11, 2009 at 6:31 PM

I’ve paid intense attention to the news for quite some time and well over 8 years, more like 40 or 50, plus I have 2 degrees in History.
President Bush didn’t lie about Iraq–we didn’t know that Saddam “disappeared” his WMDs and was no threat to us and we would never have known that had we not gone into Iraq.
The U.N. passed 16 resolutions saying that Saddam was in violation of their treaties.
Even according to UNSCOM, Saddam refused to show what he’d done with WMDs that were known to be in his possession.
That being said, WMDs weren’t the only reason we went into Iraq.
Further, President Bush never said that Saddam had anything to do with 9/11 and distinctly said so (although it was Iraqis who carried out the first bombing of the Twin Towers in 1993).

Only an idiot would say that we are less safe after fighting the WOT in Iraq and Afghanistan.
I won’t grant you the figure of $600 billion as the cost of the war, which will look like chump change if NObama has his way with this $1-9 trillion dollar boondoggle he’s getting passed now.
And you are an obscene ghoul to so cavalierly discount the brave men and women who’ve laid down their lives for our country so that we could be safer here at home and so that Iraqis and Afghans could be freed from Islamist tyranny over there.
God rest them.

As for your Zero-bama, he’s lied, obfuscated, flip-flopped, nuanced and uhm’ed-and-ah’ed about just about every issue he campaigned on.
Remember the tax cuts for 95% of the American people???
Where are they???

Jenfidel on February 11, 2009 at 9:52 PM

Constantine, in addition, he lied about there being no pork and/or earmarks in the Porkulus bill, which is the subject of this thread (as if you didn’t know…).

Jenfidel on February 11, 2009 at 9:54 PM

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