Political Correction

Rep. Blackburn Blasts Earmarks, Forgetting Her Own

December 02, 2009 2:47 pm ET

In a December 2, 2009 op-ed in the Washington Times, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) urged Republicans to campaign on earmark reform, noting she had "sworn off" earmarks herself.  During the preceding year, Congresswoman Blackburn requested nearly $12 million in earmarks.  As Blackburn has no doubt realized, it's easy to fast immediately after a $12 million meal.

Rep. Blackburn's Newfound Opposition To Earmarks

Rep. Blackburn:

We have to campaign for earmark reform to curb the use of this gateway drug to bloated budgets. We have to fight to cut spending, not in a targeted way, but across the board in a manner that requires every federal agency and department to share in reduced budgets.

I have sworn off earmarks and attempted to apply 5 percent spending cuts to most appropriations bills this year. [Blackburn op-ed, Washington Times, 12/2/09; emphasis added]

Rep. Blackburn's Earmarks

Rep. Blackburn Requested Nearly $12 Million In Earmarks In FY 2008 Appropriations Bills. According to Citizens Against Government Waste, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) requested $11,995,249 in earmarks in the fiscal year 2008 appropriations bills, including:

$778,512

Appalachian Horticulture Research (U of TN/TN State), Poplarville (Agricultural Research Service: Salaries and Expenses) 

$843,057

Cropping Systems Research, Stoneville (Agricultural Research Service: Salaries and Expenses)

$196,800

Wolf River (Corps of Engineers: Mississippi River and Tributaries)

$196,880

The Town of Collierville, Public Works Department for Wastewater Infrastructure (EPA - State and Tribal Assistance Grants)

$9,000,000

Chapel center, Fort Campbell (Army)

$490,000

U.S.-64 - Hardeman/McNairy/Hardin/Wayne Counties (Transportation & Community & System Preservation)

$490,000

State Route 374 from SR 149 to 77 Montgomery Co., Federal lands (Public Lands Highways)

[Citizens Against Government Waste, accessed 12/2/09]

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