Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Show Us The Money

Mike Rogers recently released a partial list of earmarks to local media.

Let’s leave aside the fact that he (a) didn’t release the complete list; (b) didn’t release it when requested by a constituent; (c) included all kinds of goodies for Cleary University’s Livingston campus; and (d) only had six earmarks approved, receiving waaaay less $$ than he asked for.

Mike Rogers is proud to call himself a Republican.

Are the Republicans proud to include him in their ranks?

Apparently, Republican Michigander is kinda skeptical.

In a post titled, “Can’t Go Along With This, Mike,” RM notes:

I know earmarks is how the game is played. I know that this is an attempt to bring home the bacon to the 8th district. The problem is the game itself, and Mike had a good chance to be a hero.
This was a good chance for Mike Rogers to request no earmarks and once again call out the democrats, as well as the Ted Stevens acolytes in the GOP side of the house, and bring some fiscal responsibility to the party which - until recently - carried that banner.
The system is broke, and this was a good chance to fix it.

Now, our Saul stops short of violating Reagan’s Eleventh Commandment (“Thou shalt not speak ill of another Republican”), but he’s not the only one to have noticed the disconnect between Mr. Rogers words and actions.

The Club For Growth (a/k/a Ideology R Us) gives a score of 100 to legislators who show the highest support for pro-growth policies, and anoints those with scores in the 90+ range as "Defenders of Economic Freedom."

According to the Club, Mr. Rogers hasn't been an ardent defender of economic freedom, sliding from a 71 in the 2005 score to a 58 in 2006.

The National Taxpayers Union isn't that impressed, either. In their survey of spending in the 109th Congress, they found that Mr. Rogers had voted to approve an annualized net increase of $417,331,000.

Mr. Rogers' NTU scores have ranged from 56% - 62% during his time in Congress. Though, in an example of grade inflation that would make Harvard blush, NTU gives a score of 62% a grade of “B”...

So by these fiscally conservative standards, Mike Rogers isn't being careful with our money – yet he doesn't seem to be bringing much back to the 8th district.

Where's our money going? You can start by reviewing BZP's earlier post detailing some of Mr. Rogers' campaign contributors (General Dynamics, Exxon Mobil, Lockheed Martin, Koch Industries, Wal-Mart). Then think about who's profiting from the wasteful war in Iraq, astronomical oil prices and unfair labor practices -- and the legislators who help them.

P.S. For a well-written analysis of the current GOP rift between social conservatives and fiscal conservatives, read The Elephant in the Room: Evangelicals, libertarians and the battle to control the Republican Party by Ryan Sager.

Cross-posted at

No comments: