Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Knollenberg Goes On Pork Barrel Spending Spree

Knollenberg is a big pig at the taxpayers trough.

In a lame attempt to offset criticism of his pork barrel spending, Knollenberg is now bragging about some of his "earmarks". Earmarks are where line items are secretly slipped into appropriations bills and that specify amounts of taxpayer money to be directed to friends of the Congressman.

Here is what the ultra conservative Heritage Foundation says about earmarks in an article titled "The Problem with Pork":

In the past, Congress created grant programs and either distributed the money to state and local governments by formula or instructed federal agencies to distribute the grants through a merit-based application process. Today, Congress actually determines, within legislation, who will receive government grants by "earmarking" grant money to specific recipients. Earmarks are also known as pork projects.

Earmarking is a corrupting process. Many of these pork projects are shepherded through Congress by lobbyists, who, for a generous commission, ensure that a client gets a government grant without having to go through the regular process of justifying a project to a federal agency. Perhaps coincidentally, lawmakers often receive hefty campaign donations from earmark recipients. Former Representative Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-CA), for example, is currently serving an eight-year prison term for accepting bribes in return for pork projects.

Knollenberg is currently bragging on his website about over $30 million in pork barrel spending. But he still won't release a list of all of his pork projects. He is only discussing the handful that may pass as being generally useful for the community. Knollenberg is still hiding the majority of his pork barrel spending spree.

There are of course dozens of earmarks that Knollenberg doesn't want you to know about. Earmarks like the $8 million he specified be spent by Amtrak purchasing refrigerated rail cars from his BIGGEST campaign donor's company!!!

A formula for Disaster:

Knollenberg = Pork Barrel Spending = Favors for Lobbyists

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