Appropriations

OMB: House Spending Bills Over Statutory Spending Caps Bust the Statutory Caps

In a sequestration report released on August 19, 2016, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) found that the fiscal year (FY) 2017 appropriations bills in the House are $792 million over the discretionary caps.  If signed into law, the spending bill would result in across-the-board spending cuts to enforce the statutory cap if a stopgap funding measure is not agreed to.

Government "Shutdowns": History and Consequences

During the weeks before fiscal year (FY) 2015 ended on September 30, 2015, many in Washington and across the nation braced for the potential of a “government shutdown.”  But, on that last day of FY 2015, Congress passed a short-term continuing resolution (CR) that avoided a shutdown and funded the government through December 11.  On October 2, President Obama vowed to veto any further short-term funding bills.  With the specter of the second government shutdown in three years looming for the holidays, it is helpful to understand how a shutdown works and what the consequences might be.

Congressional Appropriations 101

As schools across the country open for another year, students will learn about the division of powers in the federal government.  Teachers will describe the role of Congress and the power of the purse.  They will likely teach what should happen during the budget and appropriations process.

Surprising Republican Support for the Return of Earmarks

During a closed-door House Republican Conference meeting on November 14, 2014, Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) proposed reinstituting earmarks for “state, locality (including county and city governments), or a public utility or other public entity.”  His effort had startlingly significant amount of support in the Republican caucus: the proposal was defeated by a vote of 145-67.  Rep. Rogers’ act netted him the dubious honor of being named Citizen Against Government Waste (CAGW)’s “Porker of the Month” for November 2014.  Rep. Rogers is a repeat offender, also earning the award in April 2012, after his first failed attempt to end the earmark ban on March 30, 2012.

ARC Gets Earmark Boost

Those pork-barrel spenders are at it again.  This time, they increased the President’s fiscal year (FY) 2014 budget request for the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) by 23 percent, from $64.6 million to $80 million, in H.R. 3547, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, which was signed into law on January 17, 2014. 

Put a Fork In it! Earmarks are Dead ... Almost.

In a November 4, 2013 blog published in The Hill titled “Congress should return to responsible earmark policy,” former Rep. George Nethercutt (R-Wa.) claimed that failure to do so would create “purist legislators who largely disdain compromise, resist seniority, and refuse Congressional earmarks.” 

What If You Manufactured a Crisis, and No One Panicked?

On Friday, March 1st, 2013, the Second Mayan Apocalypse will occur – or so President Obama might have you believe.

One for Three, and Savings for All

“To sequester, or not to sequester?” That appears to be the question for many of our congressional Hamlets.

Rep. Pelosi’s Comment Misses the Mark on the U.S. Budget Problem

This weekend, House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) spoke with Chris Matthews on "Fox News Sunday."  During the interview, Pelosi delivered a quote that may be the early front runner for most absurd quote of 2013: “It is almost a false argument to say that we have a spending problem.

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CAGW Names Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand May 2018 Porker of the Month

Sen. Gillibrand is CAGW's Porker of the Month her proposal to force the fiscally-imperiled United States Postal Service to expand into banking.