DeMint, Senate Republicans Pass Sweeping Earmark Ban

David A. Patten

Senate Republicans launched a full-scale assault on deficit spending Tuesday evening, approving an earmark ban and a flurry of other belt-tightening resolutions, while challenging Democrats to do the same.

Long-time earmark foe Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina offered the moratorium, along with Sen. Tom Coburn and 12 other Senators. Sources say it is identical to an earmark ban expected to be approved by the House of Representatives.

Immediately after the vote, DeMint told Newsmax he has never in his career seen a conference so united behind foundational conservative principles.

“It’s really exciting,” he marveled. “Everybody offered resolutions to cut spending, balance the budget … it’s really exciting. Everybody got the message from the election.”

DeMint said the voice vote approving the earmarks ban was “nearly unanimous.”

…Some Republicans worry, however, that the net effect of the earmark ban will simply be to shift authority for more spending to Democrats and the president. Because earmarks are used to curry political favor in home districts, the ultimate outcome may be up to the voters, who may have to choose at some point between entitlements and pork on the one hand, and fiscal solvency on the other.

Political analyst and author Larry J. Sabato of the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics tells Newsmax the earmark ban “greatly enhances” the power of the president and the executive branch to spend money however they want, because Congress will be less specific about how money is to be spent…

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At The Daily Caller, Murkowski leads GOP pork addicts ‘going rogue’ in movement to flout earmark ban

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