Today, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) named Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) our April 2021 Porker of the Month for leading the charge to bring back wasteful pork-barrel earmarks.
On the heels of House Democrats’ vote to reinstate earmarks, House Republicans approved Rep. Rogers’ resolution to change House Republican Conference rules to remove the moratorium on earmarks and agree to allow them beginning in the fiscal year (FY) 2022 spending bills. It is not surprising that House Appropriations Committee chair Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) and Senate Appropriations Committee chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) agreed to a plan to bring them back, but House Republicans voted for an earmark moratorium in 2011 and had maintained it for the past 10 years. Even with the moratorium, CAGW continued to identify earmarks, including the 2021 Congressional Pig Book, which includes 285 earmarks costing taxpayers $16.8 billion. Since FY 1991, CAGW has identified 111,702 earmarks costing $392.5 billion.
It is hypocritical and fiscally irresponsible for Republicans to agree to restore the most costly, corrupt, and inequitable practice in the history of Congress. Rep. Rogers is leading his colleagues back into the Washington swamp, where they will be legally bribed with a few million dollars in earmarks in exchange for voting for extravagant spending bills. He claims that the process will be transparent, but earmarking will still be ripe for abuse and unfairly benefit members of the Appropriations Committees and congressional leadership.
CAGW President Tom Schatz said, "It is extremely disappointing that Rep. Rogers led the resolution that will reinstate earmarks and House Republicans voted to bring them back behind closed doors. Earmarks are not a path to unity; they are a road to fiscal ruin for taxpayers who are already saddled with a $28 trillion national debt. Rep. Rogers is going to unnecessarily add billions of dollars to the record deficit and debt, and for that he is CAGW’s April Porker of the Month."
Citizens Against Government Waste is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government. For more than two decades, Porker of the Month is a dubious honor given to lawmakers and government officials who have shown a blatant disregard for the interests of taxpayers.
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Alexandra Abrams (202) 467-5310