In response to the $410 billion legislation passed by the U.S. Congress last week, State Senator Randy Brogdon has publically called on the Oklahoma Congressional Delegation to place a one year moratorium on earmarks that they insert in federal legislation.
“We are in a financial crisis right now, “said Brogdon. “And until our economy recovers, the last thing we need is pork barrel spending that ends up costing Oklahoma taxpayers more money in the long run.”
Brogdon points to the recent example of the Louisiana Governor Jindal’s refusal of the federal stimulus money for his state. “Gov. Jindal pointed out that it would have cost Louisiana taxpayers twice as much money than what the Federal Government would have delivered due to the additional requirements as a condition of accepting the stimulus funds,” Brogdon said.
When asked why he has called for this moratorium, Brogdon points to SJR 10, legislation that he authored that reaffirms the 10th Amendment of the Constitution and requires the federal government to cease imposing new mandates and regulations that are outside their authority.
“We have a hard enough time fighting Congress’ efforts to impose new taxes and regulations on our state,” said Brogdon. “We don’t need our Representatives adding to our tax burden by piling on the pork.”
Brogdon continued, “Congress has already spent $1.2 trillion in the last 60 days. That is a pittance compared to the upcoming Obama budget which weighs in at $3.6 trillion.”
When it was pointed out to Brogdon that all but one Representative voted against the recent Omnibus bill, Brogdon replied, “It’s not enough that they simply just vote against the bill. With the exception of Senator Coburn, every one of our Congressional Delegation inserted a minimum of 10 earmarks each that totaled over $134 million dollars in that one piece of legislation.”
“It’s downright hypocritical to vote against a bill while sliding in pork for your special interests,” said Brogdon. “But by following Sen. Coburn’s example and refusing earmarks, even just for one year, the Oklahoma Congressional Delegation can demonstrate true fiscal responsibility to the people they represent.”