Thursday, July 24, 2008

MN-02 : Did Reagan feel the Planet Shaking when Kline earmark funding was approved ?

''You could feel the planet shaking,'' President Ronald Reagan said when he vetoed legislation that contained 121 "demonstration projects".
Today, we would call those "demonstration projects" earmarks, but Reagan was quick with a quip to describe pork barrel projects, stating “I haven't seen so much lard since I handed out blue ribbons at the Iowa State Fair.''

Well, I have a hunch that the shockwave that Simi Valley California felt about 5:50 PM on Tuesday night was President Reagan rolling over in his grave from what the House was funding.
At that time, John Kline’s legislation was approved.
That’s right Congressman John “Pork-Free” Kline sponsorsed the legislation that authorized $1 million dollars for a project that clearly fits the definition of pork – namely, congressional spending that applies to a very limited number of individuals or entities that don’t benefit the nation as a whole, or enhance the defense of the country.

H.R. 5235 establishes, and funds, the Ronald Reagan Centennial Commission.
That’s right, our tax dollars will be used to celebrate the anniversary of someone’s birth and lifetime accomplishments … George Washington didn’t get this observation.

Now, I have nothing against remembering Reagan, but with a national debt of over $9 trillion dollars and unfunded liabilities that make fiscal conservatives shudder, is this appropriate for the use of public money … i.e. your tax dollars?


This should be funded by private dollars. The Reagan Presidential Library gets over 300,000 visitors …. either increase the admission price or put out a collection plate.

Some may say, it’s only a Million Dollars, well, consider that on John Kline’s campaign website, he has a feature Stop The Pork in which he requests contributions and your approval on petition.

Kline cites the following projects :
-- $211,509 for olive fruit fly research in Paris (The Olive Fruit Fly is the world’s most disastrous olive pest and has infested thousands of acres of California’s olive groves.)
-- $591,000 for the Montana Sheep Institute (former Republican Senator Conrad Burns pet project)
-- $200,000 for a Lobster Institute in Maine (where both Senators are Republicans)
-- $100,000 to Develop a Walking Tour of Boydton, Virginia (requested by Republican Congressman Virgil Goode.)

Interestingly, though Congressman Kline does not mention the $500,000 requested for the Ronald Reagan Parkway in Indiana by Republican Congressman Steve Buyer that is considered an earmark in the same category as those listed above.

If Kline considered those projects as examples of Washington wasteful pork-barrel spending, then why not a Million Dollars for a Taxpayer-funded celebration ?

All I can say is mark February 6, 2011 on your calendar now for a Big Party at John Kline’s house. In the meantime, I can agree with Congressman Kline, that we must stop Congress from ”spending tax dollars on frivolous projects” and that should have started with Kline’s support of HR 5235.

1 comment:

Chris Truscott said...

Beautiful. And Kline has also supported an untold amount of pork barrel spending by the government in Baghdad.