Tell Congress to Cut Pork

ALERT: Last week, the House of Representatives was poised to dramatically cut over $50 BILLION in wasteful “pork-barrel” spending. It seemed like they were finally ready to do the job we SENT them there to do! Then, far-left groups like sent an e-mail to their members, and over 160,000 of these leftists wrote or called Congress to demand they NOT trim back our ridiculously bloated budget…
And Congress blinked. They postponed the vote to cut out dozens of “pork” projects, even in the face of even more spending to help hurricane victims.

In the aftermath of the terrible tragedy of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma, common sense dictates that Congress must use its head as well as its heart to help keep America strong. Obviously, the folks in Washington should do everything necessary (and Constitutional) to attend to the immediate needs of those who have tragically lost their homes and their livelihoods.
But, as Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) has noted, Congress must also use its head. At this critical time, we need to exercise sound fiscal judgment and ensure that we do not end up bankrupting our children and grandchildren.

“When so many lives have been shattered and relief is so critical, Congress cannot continue to fund projects like the $800,000 outhouse, $1.2 million for Panda research, or the $1 million indoor rainforest in Iowa,” said Hensarling. “The fundamental question is who should tighten their belt to pay for this damage, American families or the federal government?”

He’s exactly right. There are only three ways to pay for the emergency supplemental appropriation passed by Congress to help the victims of Hurricane Katrina and others: raise taxes, increase the national debt or tighten the belt of the federal government. By listening to radical left-wing groups like and refusing to offset this spending, Congress is simply taking the most politically expedient path by adding to our already staggering debt and passing the buck to future generations. At a time when Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are growing out of control, refusing to offset even one penny of this bill with lower priority spending is unacceptable.

Hensarling introduced an amendment to the Katrina bill which WOULD have forced Congress to cut back a lot of pork to pay for the emergency assistance. His amendment would have offset nearly $52 billion in hurricane emergency spending with funding from lower priority programs (such as in the $25 million highway bill) over five years. This commonsense offset would reduce government spending across the board, but would exempt entitlement spending, defense, homeland security and veterans funding. The amendment would not deny one penny of relief to the Gulf Coast, nor would it delay relief in any way.

You guessed it: Hensarling’s original amendment was voted down. Our Representatives in D.C., it seems, just can’t get ENOUGH of our money for their pet pork projects.

It’s time we DEMAND that Congress set spending priorities, repeal the “pork” projects in the highway bill, and re-route that money to relief efforts for those hit hardest by the recent hurricanes.

TAKE ACTION: The Wall Street Journal has asked in an editorial, “Why not cancel all of the special-project pork in the highway bill and dedicate the $25 billion in savings to emergency relief on the Gulf Coast? Is it asking too much for Richmond, Indiana, to give up $3 million for its hiking trail, or Newark, New Jersey, to put a hold on its $2 million bike path?”
Or how about these other examples, as compiled by Citizens Against Government Waste:
* $230 million for the infamous “Bridge To Nowhere” in Alaska which will service an island town of just 50 people
* $4 million for bike paths and park space in Calexico, California
* $4 million for sidewalk improvements in Clarkson, Georgia
* $3 million for a river path in Springfield, Oregon
* $2.8 million for a bike/pedestrian path in Madison, Wisconsin
* $2.7 million for renovation of the Packard Museum in Warren, Ohio
* $2.48 million for bike/pedestrian paths in Chicago, Illinois
* $2.3 million for landscaping enhancements along the Ronald Reagan Freeway in California
* $2 million to construct an “intermodal center” at the Philadelphia Zoo in Pennsylvania
* $2 million for a parking garage in San Antonio, Texas
* $1.8 million to construct a visitor interpretive center at the Gray Fossil Site in Tennessee
* $1.2 million to install lighting/steps at the Blue Ridge Music Center in Virginia
* $640,000 to extend a bicycle trail in Aberdeen, South Dakota
* $320,000 for a new bicycle/pedestrian trail in Shelbyville, Tennessee
* $33,440 for a trolley barn in Harrison, Arkansas and their allies on the far left MUST be stopped. Congress SHOULD repeal the 6,000-plus “pork” projects in the highway bill and redirect that money to the hurricane victims who really need it. But a spokesman for Rep. Don Young (R-AK), Chairman of the House Transportation Committee, called the pork-for-relief swap proposal “moronic,” and the Washington Times reports that House Republican leaders say there simply isn’t any “fat” left in the budget to be cut.
Of course there is. How about some common sense here? IT’S OUR MONEY, not Congress’ money.
Let’s make our voices heard loud and clear on this issue — because apparently, Congress is only hearing from the LEFT. First, make one quick phone call to your U.S. Representative, and just let him or her know: “Repeal the ‘pork’ projects in the highway bill, and spend it on hurricane relief efforts!” Here’s the TOLL-FREE number: 1-888-355-3588 (If that number is busy, call directly at 1-202-224-3121).
Next,use the URL below to send a FREE message to YOUR Congressman and Senators, asking them NOT to raise taxes or increase the national debt, but to repeal the highway bill’s “pork” projects and redirect that money to the victims of the hurricanes:
NOTE: was created for THIS VERY REASON — to counter the fake “grassroots” efforts of the far-left minority in this country led by groups like Together, we CAN stop their “virtual march on Washington” with our own “virtual march from the Right!”
Be sure to forward this Alert to EVERYONE you know who wants to help demand that Congress IGNORE the shrill voices from and the far left, and to cut “pork” projects in trade for hurricane relief.

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