Earmarks make a return to Congress this year, as lawmakers want billions for unusual pet projects.
Lawmakers in Washington are asking for six billion dollars in extra funding for the upcoming federal budget. They say the money for what they call “Community Funding Projects”. However, Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, say Americans might recognize them by a different term: earmarks. He says they're not good no matter who is requesting one.
“They are the currency of corruption,” Norquist said. “They are what you get in order to vote against your principles. [For example,] this is a big, stupid spending bill, but if I were to give you money for your local high school, would you vote for the big, stupid bill that will damage the country? Yes.”
Norquist says requests are coming from both sides of the aisle. Some of the more egregious ones, according to a recent report by Fox News:
- 6.4 million dollars for a Gandhi museum in Stafford, Texas
- 3 million dollars for a smartphone app to track bus locations in Utah
- 2 million dollars in funding for a new art collection at the Brooklyn Museum in New York
- 1.5 million to pay for free public Wi-fi for one city in California