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Before the Continuing Resolution and debt ceiling battle last year, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), in an interview with CNN's Candy Crowley, tried to dismiss the push for spending cuts. “[T]he cupboard is bare. There’s no more cuts to make. It’s really important that people understand that," said Pelosi. "We all want to reduce the deficit. We’re all committed to that. Put everything on the table. Review it. But you cannot have any more cuts just for the sake of cuts. Right now, you’re taking trophies."
Um, yeah, false. There may be wailing and gnashing of teeth about the sequester, but, in reality, there's still plenty of wasteful federal spending that could and should be slashed. And it's not like Congress has to go very far to find a starting point. This morning, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) released Wastebook 2014, an annual report outlining the 100 most egregious examples of government spending.
"With no one watching over the vast bureaucracy, the problem is not just what Washington isn’t doing, but what it is doing," said Coburn, who has fiercely opposed government waste during his congressional career. "Only someone with too much of someone else’s money and not enough accountability for how it was being spent could come up some of these projects."
"I have learned from these experiences that Washington will never change itself. But even if the politicians won’t stop stupid spending, taxpayers always have the last word," he added.
While there are many in Congress from both parties who, like Pelosi, either deny that there is room to cut or don't want to bother with trimming back Washington's bloated bureaucracy, the 2014 iteration of Wastebook offers $25 billion in wasteful spending from an alphabet soup of federal agencies. Here are some examples from the report:
Yeah, man, there's totally nowhere else to cut waste from the budget, right, Nancy Pelosi?