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Congressional earmarks.

That was then….

Senator Claire McCaskill (D): a conversation with bloggers in Kansas City (January 20, 2011)

Senator Claire McCaskill (D): ….I was surprised when Vicky Hartzler told me that she would take earmarks, she would seek earmarks, so….

Rep. Vicky Hartzler (r): town hall in Blue Springs, part 1 (April 29, 2011)

Representative Vicky Hartzler (r): ….And say, well, let’s get rid of earmarks. I’m like, yeah, that’s a good idea….

Rep. Vicky Hartzler (r): town hall in Blue Springs, part 3 (May 1, 2011)

Representative Vicky Hartzler (r): ….the Path to Prosperity budget that we passed….

….It cuts six point two trillion. We know that. Uh, bans earmarks, corporate welfare….

…this is now. A press release from Senator Claire McCaskill’s (D) office:

McCaskill report reveals 100-plus earmarks secretly passed by House

Senator investigated amendments to House Defense bill, found Representatives flaunting self-imposed earmark ban

December 12, 2011

WASHINGTON, D.C. – After months of work combing through a national defense spending proposal, U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill today released an explosive report finding that members of the U.S. House of Representatives attempted to circumvent their own self-imposed ban on earmarks, and that hundreds of earmarks were secretly attached to the House’s National Defense Authorization Act for 2012 (NDAA) by the House Armed Services Committee.

McCaskill’s report uncovers an elaborate scheme put in place by the House Armed Services Committee Chairman that was designed explicitly to allow his committee’s members to earmark in violation of the ban on earmarks in Congress

“This has to be a record turnaround for members of the House who claimed to be giving up their addiction to earmarks,” said McCaskill, who recently introduced bipartisan legislation to permanently ban earmarks from the legislative process.  “These Representatives can insist all they want that they don’t do earmarking anymore-but if it walks like a duck and it quacks like a duck, it’s a duck.  And it demonstrates exactly why we need my bipartisan legislation to permanently ban earmarks….”

[emphasis in original]

There’s more, from a database of National Defense Authorization Act earmarks provided by Senator McCaskill’s (D) office:

House FY 2012 NDAA Earmark Tracker

Amendment # 8

Member Hartzler

Party Affiliation, State R, MO

Subcommittee Seapower

Considered En Bloc or Standalone? En Bloc 1

Approved in what manner Voice Vote

Amount (in thousands) 20,000 [$20 million]

Description For the development of mixed conventional load capability for bomber aircraft to prosecute a broad range of pre-planned and rapidly emerging target sets (Warfighter Rapid Acquisition Program)

Offset Used (in thousands where denoted) Sec. 4201 of Division D, related to RDT&E, Navy reduction of Line 227U Undistributed

Possible Recipient Units located at Whiteman Air Force base, specifically the B-2 bomber

Past Request for similar projects No

[….]

This request would add funds to the Warfighter Rapid Acquisition Program to develop mixed conventional load capability for bomber aircraft.  This account has not received Congressional Adds in the past.  However, in her May 13, 2011 press release on the NDAA, Hartzler states that Whiteman Airforce Base, located in her district, and wher[e] the B-2 aircraft is based, will benefit from the funding provided by this amendment. This request would double the size of the fund this year.  Given the statements made by Congresswoman Hartzler that these funds will benefit Whiteman AFB, it appears the funding provided by this ame[n]dment is intended to supprot [sic] the B-2 aircraft based at Whiteman AFB, in her district.  

Amendment # 108

Member Hartzler

Party Affiliation, State R, MO

Subcommittee Readiness

Considered En Bloc or Standalone? En Bloc 2

Approved in what manner Voice Vote

Amount (in thousands) 20,000 [$20 million]

Description Operation faculties in the amount of $20 million for Air Force construction (Air Force construction and land acquisition projects and operational facilities)

Offset Used (in thousands where denoted) None specified

Possible Recipient Whiteman AFB

Past Request for similar projects No

[….]

This amendment adds $20 million to Air Force MilCon line item for operational facilities.  Hartzler’s predecessor, Ike Skelton, secured $24.05 million for Whiteman Air Force Base in the Mil Con AF account of the FY11 NDAA that passed in the House. However, before final passage all the congressionally directed spending items, including this one were stripped from the bill.  Whiteman Airforce Base is located in Knob Noster, MO which is in Hartzler’s district.

“…And say, well, let’s get rid of earmarks. I’m like, yeah, that’s a good idea….” (April 29, 2011)

From Representative Hartzler (r):

Congresswoman Hartzler secures prominent role for FLW and Whiteman AFB in protecting national security

May 13, 2011 Issues: Immigration, Defense and National Security

….Hartzler was also able to secure $40 million in Air Force funds for vital national security needs.

“Half of this $40 million will allow us to house alert air crews in facilities closer to where they are needed to prepare for and to execute vital national security missions,” added Hartzler. “The remaining $20 million will support mixed conventional load capability for Air Force bombers, allowing them to hold a wide range of munitions. I believe this increase in funding willensure our air crews have the full capabilities necessary to protect this country….”

[emphasis added]

“…if it walks like a duck and it quacks like a duck, it’s a duck…”

Anyone think the teabaggers are aware of this? Anyone think they really care? * IOKIYAR.

* it’s okay if you’re a republican