Georgia’s Porker-in-Chief at it Again…

Jack Kingston continues to bring home the bacon like a real conservative:

Rep. Jack Kingston led the Georgia delegation with $51.6 million in federal budget earmarks.

At least there is one Republican from Georgia who believes in fiscal responsibility:

Twelve of Georgia’s 13 congressmen have requested earmarks this year. The exception was Rep. Paul Broun, and Athens Republican, who arrived on Capitol Hill in July[…]

41 comments

  1. steelfist says:

    Jack Kingston is a joke. He introduces earmark reform legislation and than a month later is the largest pork barrel spender from Georgia. Throw him out.

  2. Rogue109 says:

    Got to agree with steelfist: although earmarks are, by percentage, a small part of the pie, it is still indicative of a much larger problem. A $3 trillion Federal budget that is out of contol and now an energy bill that tells me which kind of lightbulb to use…Ugh.

  3. EAVDad says:

    And I don’t think earmarks are a “conservative v. liberal” issue. It’s a matter of putting keeping your job ahead of doing the right thing. Sad.

  4. For a minute there, i thought you were talking about Rep Steve Davis, Henry County Realtor & Transportation Cmte member who wants to reward GDOT’s inefficiency and corruption with more money…

    Wednesday, December 19, 2007 – 2:31 PM EST

    Legislator proposes more GDOT funding

    http://atlanta.bizjournals.com/atlanta/stories/2007/12/17/daily27.html?jst=b_ln_hl

    Rep. Steve Davis (R-McDonough) has pre-filed legislation that would give the Georgia
    Department of Transportation the entire 4 percent of revenue from the state’s gas sales tax.

    Currently, GDOT gets 3 percent.

    Georgia today has two motor fuel taxes, a set 7.5 cents-per-gallon excise tax and a 4 percent prepaid sales tax. The entire 7.5 cents is dedicated as motor fuel funds and is directly appropriated to GDOT, while only 3 of the 4 percent prepaid sales tax is dedicated as motor fuel and directly appropriated to GDOT.

    Under Davis’ proposed legislation (House Bill 914), in 2008, GDOT would get an extra $169 million. In 2009, GDOT would get $180 million.

    “The legislation I have proposed will not raise taxes,” Davis said. “However, it will redirect or shift the funds that are already taxed on motor fuel … back to the rightful place with the Georgia Department of Transportation.”

  5. drjay says:

    its real easy to rail on earmarks–but they are a relatively small portion of the budget and often the only way to get important projects funded–is the process flawed–sure–should it be discarded–no

  6. Victor do you support the Statewide T-SPLOST or the Regional T-SPLOST? The statewide bill is a $22 Billion+ tax increase and the regional is a $10 Billion+ tax increase.

    For the last year all we have heard is that the General Assembly better do something for transportation.

    I have offered a bill that DOES NOT INCREASE TAXES but directs current taxes to their appropriate place which will help GDOT fund additional projects.

    No rewards from me, this is a simple measure that we can pass as the new Commissioner addresses the mess she has has found.

  7. CHelf says:

    I find it odd when conservatives who argue the free market should handle its own innovations and advancements give free passes to Republicans spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on peanut and poultry research. I’ve looked down the list and am amazed at what conservatives have asked for.

  8. DMZDave says:

    Paul Broun doesn’t have any earmark requests because most appropriations subcommittees have requirements to turn them in by late April. I certainly hope he requests earmarks next year.

    I look at some of the earmarks I personally helped move through the Congress and wonder at the vitriol expressed. For example, there was the $1M earmark added to the Marine Corps budget to study new improved Flak vests. That one was added about three years before the Iraq war, yielded great results, improved designs for protective vests and saved lives. I’m so ashamed of that pork -not. Another earmark in which I was involved directed funding for research into the causes and treatment for Gulf War Syndrome. The Clinton Administration believed GWS was caused by stress as a result of the 100 hour war. The senator I worked for begged to differ and over the objections of DoD added $5M to research causes and cures. Those vets deserved answers as to what the hell was happening to them.

    Budgets submitted by the President are filled with pet projects designed by some bureaucrat. Why is it a given that a federal government bureaucrat knows where money should be spent in Georgia better than the Congressman who represents the district?

    The greatest porker of all time, Senator Robert Byrd once told me during the Clinton Administration ” Hillary Clinton is flying around Africa this week and every time she sets down, she leaves behind millions in promises for federal funding for these countries and everyone is so happy. That’s presidential pork plain and simple.” No one porks out as much as the administration..

    In addition, specifically because Congressman Kingston is an increasingly powerful appropriator, federal bureaucrats game the system when they write the budget knowing he can and will add back in funds they left out. For example, Georgia rarely gets appropriate funding for military construction because Pentagon budgeteers know that Saxby Chambliss and Jack Kingston will make it right and when they do, they don’t deserve to be blasted for it.

    I don’t believe Georgia has ever had an Appropriations Chairman in its history and Georgia has had very few members even serving on the Committee. As a direct result, Georgia taxpayers get less return on their tax dollar than taxpayers in most other states. With Sanford Bishop and Jack Kingston on the Appropriations Committee, there is a now a chance that we might begin to get our fair share – and it is our fair share.

  9. I am proposing it begin with the 2009 budget and be absorbed in the annual increase without taking from any other program. However, I could come up with $169 million in the $20 Billion budget to eliminate.

    You did not answer my question.

  10. Rick Day says:

    Rep Davis: please disclose how many firms, individuals or family members of individuals who benefit directly or indirectly from GaDOT contracts, have given you contributions during your political career.

    Until then, I remain a skeptic as to why you wish to reward GaDOT with more of my money to waste.

    Many thanks.

  11. IndyInjun says:

    DMZDave:

    What this means is that wasted money is magnified by 50. If the practice was eliminated, it would save $billions.

    Porking out like Kingston is not only not conservative, it is not Republican either.

    But then, he is another GOP impostor who voted for Medicare D. Once he crossed the line with the GOP’s 70% increase in social spending programs, there is no travesty beyond him.

    He needs an opponent too, so that he can be given a swift kick out of Congress.

    How you folks can claim GOP platforms and stated principles yet remain in support of the likes of Kingston is beyond me.

    What do YOU stand for? Selling America into slavery to the Saudis and Chinese financiers?

    America is bankrupt and has been ruined by the likes of Jack Kingston.

  12. CHelf says:

    DMZDave,

    There is a difference between equipping soldiers and funding research to entities in the private sector, museums, etc. It’s called hypocrisy when conservatives advocate less government, less wasteful spending, and less money coming out of our paychecks when they hand out these projects solely as rewards or to win votes. To sit there and tell me right before an election that they are representing conservative less government values is a blatant misrepresentation of the facts. To sit here and attack Democrats for wasteful spending and telling us how Democrats will increase taxes and size of government when these ‘conservatives’ are handing out our hard earned money as if it were theirs to begin with is wrong. What part of the word “conservative” does this concept represent? Some people think it’s great how these elected servants of the people are bringing their fair share back to their district. Why aren’t they working hard to make sure it never left the district, and my paycheck, in the first place? And to the comment that this is small and insignificant, tell that to our state legislators who told us a $50 tax refund that Sonny blocked was worthwhile as well. Frankly I don’t care if it is pennies. If you say you’re conservative, practice it.

  13. Holly says:

    I dislike the fact that we think the federal government is Santa. Let’s face it: the majority of folks get mad at the porkers. . . until it benefits them. Then it becomes a “necessary expenditure.”

    The one good thing is that Georgians still fuss at their reps for the pork – at least on some level. It’s totally different in the land of John Murtha and Jerry Lewis.

    There were a couple of articles in Pittsburgh papers today hinting that Murtha didn’t get enough earmarks through. Can you imagine what they must believe is appropriate?

    May we never get to that mindset here. . .

  14. All of my contributions are public record, and I hope that every single one of them will benefit from this legislation. But yet again, the subject is not about the merits of the bill but personal attacks.

    The bill makes sense and will be much easier to implement than the other transportation funding proposals that create another agency for transportation in addition to increasing taxes.

    So Rick, do you support the Statewide T-SPLOST or the Regional T-SPLOST?

  15. Bull Moose says:

    I would like to see DOT be something more than the Department of Roads.

    We must realize the goal of transportation is to move people and not just cars.

    As the price of oil continues to rise, it will eventually be unsustainable to continue this singular focus of roads, roads, roads.

  16. Still Looking says:

    Amen Bull, and Rep Davis, I support the regional splost. Let metro Atlanta control its tax money to solve the transportation crisis we face here. There ‘s no sense sending it to be fubar at DOT.

  17. Thanks for the clarification Steve. I have a lot of neighbors and cousins going over GDOT with a fine tooth comb. More questions later. $169 million might pay for a third of the William Tecumseh Sherman I16-I75 Interchange.

    http://www.macon-bibb.com/ROADS/i16i75.htm

    But until GDOT has the kind of transparency, oversight and competent management that Rep Jill Chambers is implementing on Martoc, i wouldn’t give them another penny.

    Year End Martoc Meeting here, it’s worth the 1’23” 49 seconds to watch:

    http://switchboard.real.com/player/email.html?PV=6.0.12&&title=martoc121807&link=http%3A%2F%2Fmedia.legis.ga.gov%2Fhav%2Fmartoc%2Fmartoc121807.wmv

  18. Good morning. I have been “going” over GDOT and the whole network for 3 years. There definitely needs to be major changes but it does not end with GDOT. I have posted on my site many times discussing the alphabet soup of agencies, authorities and commssions that need to be eliminated or streamlined or consolidated for a long time.

    The last thing we need to do is to implement a “new” tax and start a new agency. I am certainly not in support of giving the ARC anything.

    There will be many more bills to come for this session addressing transparency and efficiency.

  19. juliobarrios says:

    What an amazing and brave stand Paul Broun is taking. A half-freshman legislator of the minority parking not requesting any earmarks.

    I don’t like the current rules of the game, but as long as the rules are the way they are I want my Congressman fighting for as much of that money as possible. I put enough of my hard-earned money in that morass called Washington and if I can’t actually have the money myself then the next best thing would be to benefit from some of it in my district.

    It’s comical to see that some complain about Kingston, or any other Congressman getting money for his district, and think that if he refused the money it just simply wouldn’t be spent.

    Do you think that if a pack of hyenas took down a zebra, and one hyena chose not to eat, that the zebra still wouldn’t get chewed to the bone?

    Now if you want to try and come up with an overall rule limiting the pork then I’m all for it.

  20. Still Looking says:

    To implement the transportation plan of the 10 metro counties, we need $80 million. Metropolitan Atlanta, primarily suburban, Republican Atlanta, is choking on traffic. We now have the reputation of the second worst congestion in the U.S. We haven’t located a new corporate HQ in years and we’ve lost several.

    Without new money to address the glaring transportation problems, the region and state are going to suffer. Let the local residents decide whether they want to tax themselves. Let the local elected leaders in metro Atlanta solve their problems. Relying on DOT is not an option.

  21. Uncle Remus says:

    That’s nothing compared to John Murtha. We all get ripped off by his pork barreling. I had a link to searchable database of all the pork but i can’t find it. Murtha was on top of everyone. Pelosi was slightly higher than Kingston. So much for all of those promises about limiting pork.

  22. IndyInjun says:

    Julio:

    I am in favor of shooting the first hyena. The rest of them tend to take note. If they don’t, shoot them all.

    Earmarks should be totally eliminated and TERM LIMITS imposed.

  23. Great answer Still Looking. Just a bit of info for you; the ARC is currently in charge of setting the TIP (transportation project list) for the metro area, the ARC is in charge of Water planning, and the ARC is in charge of land use and zoning policies for the metro region. How they doing?

    The ARC is dominated by Fulton and Dekalb officials that want to urbanize the entire region regardless of the infrastructure needs. The ARC is in the business of social engineering and I refer to them as The United Nations of Georgia! Counties such as Henry, Rockdale, Cherokee, Douglas would immediately become donor counties to the regionally transportation funding plan. The ARC would use its bully pulpit to force unwilling counties into a plan. Furthermore, the current structure of the bill does not even allow the voters of the county to opt out of any tax increase. For example if the voters of my district and my county of Henry overwhelmingly, lets say 80% say no to the new tax, but the regionwide vote is 52% yes, then Henry County would still be charged the tax! Whether or not you agree with everything I am saying I hope you can find the fault in that.

  24. southernwave says:

    The main thing to note is that the rules are set either to insert or not to insert earmarks… Given that note then obviously Kingston is working well with the majority to insert his and other ga deligation members earmarks into the bill which is called common ground which would help with allot of other bills in the House… AJC just needs to make sure they back up the article with what actually gets implemented after final passage of the bill.

  25. GodHatesTrash says:

    If it wasn’t for Westmoreland and Chambliss, Kingston would be the biggest moron in Congress.

    He’s garbage.

  26. GOP Girl says:

    And you’re an idiot.

    Pork? Did I miss something? Because the list I saw from the AJC didn’t show too much pork to me. It showed a Statesman doing his job, as he was elected to do.

  27. joe says:

    GOP Girl,

    I did not look at anybody’s list of earmarks/pork, but which items are attributed to Jack Kingston that are proper Federal responsibilities under the Constitution? Often, under the tenth Amendment, most of this stuff should belong to the STATES.

  28. Still Looking says:

    Rep Davis, I’m sorry, but who makes land-use and zoning decisions? Who implements the TIP? Who implements the water plan, which the water planning board adopts? Answer: not ARC. The planning that ARC does is quite good. Getting DOT to implement the TIP is another matter. Getting the legislature to pass the State water plan is still an open question. The North Metropolitan Georgia Planning District water plan is being implemented by local governments.

    I don’t believe ARC is not dominated by DeKalb and Fulton. There are twenty members that come from the 10 county chairman and and 10 mayors from each county. The electeed officials run things and they have to balance between the Fulton’s and Henry’s.

    Let local government solve its problems. Give the local citizens the option to tax themselves. If the state wants to build more four-lanes to no where, have at it, but metro Atlanta needs better management (control) over it limited transporation resources.

  29. GodHatesTrash says:

    What kind of bottom-feeder scum votes for the slime that makes up the Georgia congressional delegation?

    Hint – trash elects trash.

  30. steelfist says:

    GOP Girl – Jack Kingston is a hypocrite. He doesn’t walk the walk he talks. All of you from Savannah are foolishly following him. He’s a joke and the rest of Georgia knows it. Let’s hope he runs state-wide so we can finally rid ourselves of his incompetency.

  31. GOPeach says:

    PAUL BROUN will prove to be THE MOST Conservative Congressman in Washington.

    I urge all 10th Congressional District Voters
    to contact him and let him know what a great
    job he is doing thus far.

    Let him know that you are watching him and
    supporting his efforts to lead the way on no
    pork-barrel spending.

    He will not let you down.

  32. GodHatesTrash says:

    Steelfist, if you think Kingston couldn’t win statewide, you’re mistaken.

    Look at the garbage the people of Georgia have already elected to statewide office – Chickenhawk Chambliss and Goobernor Sonny.

  33. Jace Walden says:

    The first time I saw one of those Wendy’s “Baconater” commercials, I thought they we’re talking about Jack Kingston, Georgia’s very own Porker-in-Chief.

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