One would think with Republicans controlling the White House and Congress, one area that they could come to agreement on would be the budget. But we are two and a half months into the 2004 fiscal year and the federal budget is not done. Not only that but it looks like it won't be complete until January, almost one year after the President sent his budget message to Capital Hill.
Here is a handy scorecard showing the pathetic progress made by the regime in adopting spending measures. While they could get their act together to support Defense, they haven't been able to support Veterans. What is the lesson here? They take care of you when the need you, but then ...well bupkus.
Except if you are lucky enough to be in the pork...or the trough. Like this gem...$50 Million to construct a facility to study the rain forest in Iowa. People forget how balmy it is there. Or my favorite $325,000 for Salinas, CA to build a swimming pool...because the Republican Congressman feels guilt for messing the pool up when he was a kid. Sort of begs the question about PERSONAL RESPOSNIBILITY ehh.
What is not in the bill?
How about the extention of unemployment benefits, because the Christmas present from the Republican Congress to 80,000 Americans (and their families) is the cessation of their unemployment benefits? And speaking of the gift that keeps on giving, the benefits will run out for a new group of 80,000 families each week well into the New Year.
What about the provision to block the Administration's new rules for overtime that will deprive millions of working families of wages that they could count on in the past?
What about the provision to block the implementation of the new media rules? Stripped by the Republicans.
Now you know why there is so much pork. They have to buy off the votes of wavering Republicans. That is why it is taking them so long. The same way that got their homeland security department. The same way they got their Medicare vote. Tactics as old as the Republic. The problem is that we are going to run a $500 Billion dollar deficit, but Salinas gets a pool.