Senate Republicans Split on Earmark Ban

The American people wanted you to begin dismantling a bloated, corrupt federal government where only the rich and powerful derive any benefit, not to lecture us from your ivory tower about how ignorant we are about your job description.

Let’s turn this around and ask the question from another perspective. If you can’t accomplish something so allegedly insignificant as cleaning up the federal budget a bit by banning earmarks, how can we trust you will do the right thing when political pressures demand you do heavy lifting on something major?

While some in the GOP insist on maintaining a party full of Old Bull, they incessantly repeat history in a manner that bodes ill for America’s future.

Last January, Republicans as the minority party voted en masse against raising the debt ceiling. One day after the election:

U.S. House Speaker-apparent John Boehner pledged the new House majority would listen to the voters who swept the Republicans into power.

But now, in true Bastiat form, Republicans plan to increase the federal debt ceiling to cover this year’s $1.5 trillion deficit. They did this without first preparing a plan to streamline a bloated government, not even by banning earmarks.

McConnell and Inhofe need a brief history lesson.

The 2008 elections were a mandate against business as usual under the GOP and Bush. CNN exit polls showed that only 28% thought Bush was doing a good job, and 48% thought McCain -- as leader of the Republican Party by nature of his presidential candidacy -- would continue Bush’s policies.

This was one crucial nail in the GOP’s coffin that year.

In 2010, voters didn’t vote so much in favor of the Republican Party as against Obama’s agenda. Politico notes: “Following their midterm rout of Democrats, Republicans are welcoming a big crop of freshmen who criticized earmarks on the campaign trail ... .”

Even the BBC admitted that Republicans campaigned with the promise to halt Obama’s agenda. The results are historical fact that their promise played well among the electorate.

McConnell and Inhofe should take this reality to heart, before they set dynamics in motion that return America to 2008.