Mississippi’s senators voted correctly and in our state’s interests Tuesday night in supporting passage of the 2009 omnibus appropriations bill to fund nine federal departments and earmarked programs unresolved since the budget year started in October.
Sens. Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker, both Republicans, voted with the 62-35 majority to end debate.
Wicker’s and Cochran’s legislative skills include widely successful earmarking (specific appropriations for Mississippi projects) for programs, agencies and institutions in Mississippi.
The six Senate Republicans who voted to invoke cloture ending debate were: Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), Kit Bond (Mo.), Cochran (Miss.), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Shelby (Ala.), Olympia Snowe (Maine), Arlen Specter (Pa.), and Wicker (Miss.).
Those Republicans’ votes defied the super-heated rhetoric from many in their own party, with many of those voting against the bill still standing to gain politically from hundreds of millions in earmarks they made in a bill they ultimately opposed.
Those same politicians scream for transparency on the earmarks issue but cloud their own work and results at the most basic level.