Here’s hoping congressional earmarks define ’14 Senate race

Before Club for Growth and others engage in revisionist history over the question of congressional earmarks in Mississippi’s 2014 U.S. Senate campaign, let’s reflect on the record.

The ink wasn’t dry on Thad Cochran’s confirmation that he would seek a seventh term as Mississippi’s senator before the Club for Growth issued a statement calling Cochran “a strong supporter of wasteful earmarks — something opposed by Republican leaders in both the Senate and the House.”

That little bit of verbal sleight of hand ignores the fact that Cochran is among the Republican leadership in Congress and that the vast majority of members in both houses in both parties utilized earmarks for decades until it became politically unpopular.

And it ignores the fact that without congressionally directed spending, the discretion in federal spending is left to President Barack Obama and his Office of Management and Budget, and it ignores that through phone calls, emails and other “soft” earmarks, congressional efforts to direct spending continues virtually unimpeded today.

Sid Salter
12/7/13