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Saturday, October 22, 2005 

Unholy Alliance

A fair amount has been written about the "unholy alliance" between Kos and the Club for Growth on the issue of the Coburn amendment, which failed Thursday on the Senate floor 15-82. Basically, it was legislation to cut a little pork and redirect that money to the areas affected by Hurricane Katrina. You can get the details from any of the links above.

I'm wondering why this is seen as such a crazy thing. Since the Republican takeover of the House in 1994, the federal budget has continued to balloon, a fact entirely antithetical to the Republicans' stated goals. Much has been said about the enormous increases in spending during the last few years under the Bush administration and an entirely Republican Congress, increases greater than even LBJ's. Then, of course, we have indicted former majority leader Tom DeLay (I love writing that) saying there's no fat left in the budget. This can lead us to only one conclusion: the GOP is unwilling or unable to keep the budget under control.

Much of this ballooning budget is due to pork and, with Republicans in control of Congress, most of it goes to Republican districts. Thus, it's not really in our interest, as taxpayers or as Democrats, to have this much pork being doled out.

It's time for Democrats to start presenting a clear economic alternative to the kamikaze policies that the GOP has been using for the past decade. We need to become fiscal conservatives. We need to show the American people that we're against spending money wastefully. When we do spend money, we can show the electorate what it's going to pay for: getting rid of a useless $223 million bridge can pay for x people covered by universal health care or y soldiers in Iraq equipped with the body armor they need to keep fighting. As long as we're not able to spend money on the things we know need it, we should be against most spending in general. Lets not let this be the last thing we agree on with the Club for Growth. Let work to curb Republicans' ridiculous spending habits and show the American people that we're the ones who will be responsible stewards of their money.

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