$1 trillion-plus omnibus spending bill riles GOP senators
It’s time to work out the numbers for the new fiscal year, and Democratic senators have brought a $1 trillion omnibus spending bill to the floor that has Republicans seeing red, reports College News. The 1,924-page spending bill asks for $1.27 trillion to fund various federal programs. But what Senate Republicans found particularly stunning are the 20,000-plus earmarks.
An omnibus of pork projects
Sen. John Thune’s (R-S.D.) reply to the omnibus bill is indicative of the Republican party’s current stance on deficit spending. While Senate Democrats insist the nearly $1.27 trillion price tag is necessary for the government to run smoothly, Sen. Thune called the bill “reckless spending” and stated his party’s opinion that the bill shouldn’t even make it to the floor for a vote.
Omnibus highlights by category
According to the Washington Post, $668 billion of the omnibus spending bill is slated for Pentagon spending. On the domestic front, $43 billion would be set aside for the Department of Homeland Security, $10 billion would go to Border Patrol, and state and local law enforcement agencies would receive $3.8 billion. College students would benefit – or be debt burdened – by $25 billion in student financial aid.
$29 billion less than the president wanted
Amazingly, the omnibus is reportedly $29 billion lower that President Obama’s initial request. The submitted omnibus plan would keep spending at the same level as the previous fiscal year, but experts with an eye toward austerity measures are waving red flags. The national debt is currently at about $13.8 trillion, and in a mere 25 years – by 2035 – that number is expected to triple if austerity measures aren’t enacted.
The pot calling the kettle black
It may be easy for concerned citizens to understand why massive increases in deficit spending will do nothing to bail the U.S. out of its debt, but based upon voting records, the Republicans who are complaining about the stratospheric number of earmarks in the omnibus spending bill are guilty of similar mathematical lunacy. If the U.S. government goes bankrupt, not only will pork projects fall by the wayside, so will the last shred of respect the American people may have for their elected officials.
Republicans on the omnibus war path