Blue Dog Dems want their pet projects funded, screw everyone else

From Bloomberg:

Overall, Blue Dogs submitted more than 2,500 individual earmarks totaling some $20 billion. That underscores the conflict between their eagerness to bring federal money home and the coalition’s criticism of the budget as laden with pork.
“It’s really hard to smack government’s wrists with the one hand while the other hand is looking for as much earmark cash as you can grab and bring home to your district,” said Steve Ellis, vice president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, a Washington-based public-interest group."

"“As long as they are going to have earmarks, I’m going to submit projects to get money,” Marshall, whose rural central Georgia district includes Robins Air Force Base, said in a telephone interview. “I’m not going to cause the folks in my district to miss out just to make a point.” "

"The Blue Dogs’ goal is to “restore fiscal discipline to this nation’s budgeting process,” said Representative Allen Boyd of Florida. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office on March 20 projected that President Barack Obama’s budget will lead to a $1.85 trillion deficit this year.

Boyd, who said pay-go is the only way to rein in spending, argues that there’s no conflict between earmark requests and the group’s message of fiscal conservatism. "

Gee I’m shocked. This is why people are so cynical about Congress…it’s really just the same old shit.

I think they’re using the term Blue Dog differently than I had ever heard it defined. It’s like they have a team mascot or something. That was always a term that you applied to voters (and not a particularly complimentary one) - not to, you know, elected officials. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that they don’t understand the contradiction between their stated goals and their methods in that case.

That said, I don’t blame the dudes for continuing to submit earmarks. A Congressman’s efficacy in most places is judged primarily on what he can bring to his district. This is the only way to bring things to his district. If you’re not an important enough figure to make the Sunday talk shows (meaning that you have actual influence over public policy), I get the distinct impression that you’re going to lose your job lickety-quick if you don’t bring some of that sweet ass federal cash back home. It’s easy for taxpayers to say that they want federal spending reduced on a survey, but when your neighbors up the road or across the state line are getting a bunch of grants to build light rail systems they don’t need or perform some other task, a lot of people change their tune.

“Submitted” doesn’t mean they’ll make it into the budget.

They should hire Jenny McCarthy as a spokesperson. What. The. Fuck.