Despite the devastating effects of September 11, Americans remain committed to fiscal discipline. Out of control, pork barrel spending in the appropriations bills will do nothing to secure our nation, but it will waste billions upon billions of dollars. Members of Congress need to restrain spending and find a fiscal backbone. Some members of Congress, such as Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA), even want to repeal portions of the tax cuts that President Bush signed into law last June. We cannot let this tax increase happen. Members of Congress need to know that they cannot get away with spending billions of dollars on pork barrel projects and raising taxes on Americans during a recession.

With budget deficits looming, instituting fiscal reform has become monumentally important. September 11 made certain budget debates inconsequential, but we also found that there were many politicians that wanted to use the tragedy to further their pork barrel spending. Now members of Congress want to raise taxes to help offset this new spending.

  • When asked at the end of the legislative session on December 21st how Alaska made out in the Defense appropriations bill, Senate Appropriations Chairman Ted Stevens said, “like a bandit.”
  • The Labor, HHS and Education Appropriations bill included over 600 individual earmarks within the health section ALONE for Members pork barrel spending interests.
  • This bill, which also contains the Environmental Protection Agency, included over 32 single spaced pages of individual earmarks.
  • The Farm subsidy bill, which Senator Daschle tried to so hard to push through the Senate during the waning weeks of the session, included more than $70 billion in farm subsidies yet miniscule amounts would have actually made it to individual farmers.
  • These are just some examples of the ways Congress abuses taxpayers’ dollars while the administration and the American people focus on fighting a war.


    Make President Bush’s Tax Cuts Permanent.

    The tax cut recently signed into law was the first sizable tax cut for Americans in a generation. Putting more money into peoples’ hands is the best way to ensure economic growth. Unfortunately, members of Congress are now clamoring to raise taxes so that they can spend more on big government programs. We need to call on legislators to make President Bush¡¦s tax cuts permanent.

    Inject Some Sanity into the Budget Process.

    Before September 11, the president promised to hold the budget to a modest 4 percent increase. Unfortunately, the September tragedy has diminished budget limitations and opened government coffers. America¡¦s new focus on fighting terrorism and protecting homeland security will make instituting any kind of limitations difficult. But regardless, politicians must hear from voters that they cannot spend tax dollars on programs that are not priorities. Public expenditures should be necessary for the functioning of the federal government, not for used to benefit a select few with political connections.

    Hold Members of the Congress Accountable for their Spending Outrages.

    Citizen activism is the only way to get your congressional leaders to care about spending restraint. If politicians know that the average citizen is watching and will want to know why they are taking money out of the federal coffers for pork barrel spending, they will think twice.


    Write your legislators and let them know what you think about pork barrel spending


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