I talk about pork a lot not because Iâ€™m obsessed with pigs, but because I cover Congress.
I talk about pork spending not because itâ€™s the worst spending the federal government does, but because it should be the easiest to stop.
And yet it goes on and on. Pork spending is snuck into legislation as â€œearmarks.â€ The President of the United States explained it to Congress last year:
Over 90 percent of earmarks never make it to the floor of the House and Senate. They are dropped into committee reports that are not even part of the bill that arrives on my desk. You didnâ€™t vote them into law. I didnâ€™t sign them into law. Yet, theyâ€™re treated as if they have the force of law.
Actually, the prez went on to say the practice must stop. Congress applauded. But they might as well have been snorting, weâ€™ve seen tens of thousands of earmarks since.
I have mentioned before that the President could simply sign an Executive Order telling his branch of government to ignore earmarks not actually placed in the legislation.
And so he did, on January 29th. All earmarks not voted on by Congress from now on will be as if nothing. Further, the president promised to veto any bill that did not cut the amount of earmarks actually voted on by Congress in half.
So is the stalemate over porkÂ . . . over? Well, with a cut in half of earmarks as the goal, we seem set to go only halfway.
This is Common Sense. Iâ€™m Paul Jacob.