Colorado’s piece of omnibus pork

Taxpayers for Common Sense has put out its “Version Three” spreadsheet of earmarks contained in the omnibus spending bill for Fiscal Year 2009. It’s an Excel document that can be searched by bill, earmark, representative, senator, state and more!

The Colorado delegation pulled down its share of cash, but none of the state’s officials ranked among the top earmark getters.

In the Senate, Democrat Ken Salazar, now interior secretary, ranked 69th. He secured $44.6 million. Republican Sen. Wayne Allard ranked 79th. He secured $30.7 million.

In the House, Democrat Ed Perlmutter led the pack, ranking 212 of roughly 450 representatives. Perlmutter secured $11.9 million. Democrat John Salazar ranked 338, with $4.7 million. Democrat Diana DeGette came in at 366 with $3.5 million, and Republican Doug Lamborn, came in at number 375, securing $2.9 million.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said that once the omnibus bill is passed and behind them, members of Congress will be happy to work with President Obama on reforming earmark funding. As Congressional Quarterly puts it today:

“After we get through the omnibus . . . then we can work with the administration to see what else we can do. But the idea is lower number, more transparency, total accountability,” said Pelosi, D-Calif., making it clear that any review of earmarks would only follow consideration of the House-passed fiscal 2009 spending package (HR 1105) now moving through the Senate.

CQ also noted this spreadsheet nugget, which pretty much goes to the heart of U.S. politics:

Ron Paul, R-Texas, who touted his fiscal conservatism in his bid for the GOP presidential nomination last year, was the top House Republican earmark recipient in the omnibus. Paul, who routinely votes against spending measures, got $73.7 million in earmarks, according to Taxpayers for Common Sense.

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About the Author

John Tomasic

Writer, editor, teacher, web wrangler. He has worked for art, business, culture, politics publications, five universities and a UN war crimes commission. @johntomasic | 720-432-2128 |

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