Senator Claire McCaskill (D) on the floor of the Senate last night:
…I have made a decision that earmarking is not a process that I think is the appropriate way to spend public money. But I, I’m a little confused about some of the righteous indignation coming from the Republican side of the aisle about this bill. Um, the omnibus twenty-ten that they have sitting out there, they’re wanting the American people to think that this document came from Democrats. They want the American people to think that omnibus twenty-ten, that all those pages sitting there were done by Democrats. They weren’t done by Democrats. Those pages were done by Democrats and Republicans. Every bit of that document was drafted by Republicans and Democrats right down to the earmarks.
And for the minority leader [Senator Mitch McConnell (r)] to stand here and act as if this document is something that is the fault of the Democratic Party when he well knows that he has been involved, I have been involved in terms of trying to get the number down, and I’m glad we succeeded in getting the number down as been referenced to the Sessions McCaskill number, but this was a bipartisan effort to get the number down.
And the irony is, guess who has earmarks in there? The minority leader who just voted on a moratorium for earmarks ten minutes ago. Did he pull his earmarks out? No.
Did any of the Republicans who voted for a moratorium on earmarks, did they pull their earmarks out before this bill came to the floor? We could have eliminated a few pages.
So, you know, I just don’t think the righteous indignation works. This was a bipartisan effort drafted by Republicans and Democrats. It came to the floor after months of work by Democrats and Republicans. And it was presented to this body in a bipartisan way to vote on. I wasn’t gonna vote on it. I’m against it. But I just, so I think that I have a slight bit of credibility to call these guys on this notion that this is something that sprung from nowhere out of some back room on the Democratic side of the aisle.
This sprung from a bipartisan effort of the Appropriations Committee and every member on that side of the aisle knows it. They know it. And they know the earmarks in there, there are almost seven hundred million dollars of earmarks in there from people who voted on a moratorium on earmarks. That’s like being half pregnant.
They should have said before this bill ever came to the floor, and they were asked, would you like your earmarks pulled out? No, no, they were perfectly willing to vote no and take those earmarks home.
So, on one hand, I would have voted no had we had the vote, and I said that from day one. I voted no on the omnibus last year. I voted no on another omnibus because I don’t think it’s the right way to appropriate.
But this is an equal opportunity sin. The problems with this process don’t lie on one side of the aisle, they lie on both sides of the aisle. And the notion that the Republicans are trying to say this is just about the Democrats is the kind of hypocrisy that gives us the lowest ratings we have in terms of confidence of the American people.
We need to own up here. This is not about the Democrats. This is about both sides of the aisle and a flawed appropriations process that couldn’t get to the floor because of a lot of obstructionism. And when it finally did get to the floor it came in one package. But it is not fair for the Republicans to act like that all those ages came from the Democratic side of the aisle. They certainly did not…
Gee, it would have been nice if Senator McCaskill (D) had expended the same energy and vote opposing the windfall tax break for millionaires and billionaires.