The WasteWatcher: The Staff Blog of Citizens Against Government Waste

The WasteWatcher

The WasteWatcher is the staff blog of Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) and the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW). For questions, contact blog@cagw.org.




American Health Care Act -- A Bill to Repeal and Replace Obamacare

The House Republicans have introduced a bill that will begin the process to repeal and replace Obamacare, entitled the American Health Care Act of 2017 (AHCA). Obamacare is collapsing and Congress must act to stabilize and prevent further turmoil in the individual and small group health insurance market.

Smoke and Mirrors: Teenage E-Cigarette Use Down

There is a lot of misinformation regarding e-cigarettes.  If you’re the parent of a teen, you have probably seen the sensational headlines about “studies” concluding that teens are vaping at “record highs” because it’s now what the “cool kids” are doing. However, this “fact” couldn’t be further from the truth.

A debate is ongoing about whether or not e-cigarettes will lead teenagers down the Big Tobacco road. Some healthcare trade associations are claiming “doom and gloom” because teens are allegedly using e-cigarettes at a staggering rate.

The Debt Ceiling: Extraordinary Measures and Where to Find Them

On March 7, 2017, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) announced that if the debt ceiling was not raised or extended before March 16, the Treasury will be unable to borrow funds for standard operating procedures.  In order to avoid breaching the debt ceiling, the Treasury will be forced to take extraordinary measures so that it is able to continue borrowing, but this will only last for a short period.  Another debt ceiling fight in Congress is inevitable, but most likely not un

Flake, et al. to POTUS: Veto Earmarks!

On Tuesday, March 7, 2017, at a time when the U.S. House of Representatives is contemplating a return to the “insidious” practice of “earmarking,” U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), joined by a handful of his colleagues, wrote to President Donald J. Trump urging the nation’s chief executive to veto any legislation that includes earmarks.  According to Sen.

Pentagon Obscures Cost Growth of “Little Crappy Ship”

According to a March 2017 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, the Defense Office of Prepublication and Security Review, which is charged with reviewing information to be released to the public, blocked awkward information regarding cost growth in a historically wasteful program.

Bernie’s Bereft and Bogus Bill

On February 28, 2017, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) introduced, S.

An Obamacare Repeal/Replace First Draft

On February 16, an "Obamacare Repeal and Replace Policy Brief and Resources" document was released that laid out the following points:  Obamacare has failed; it will only get worse; that repealing the law will provide relief combined with a stable transition to something new; and the Republicans in Congress have a better way to deliver healthcare in this country.

Tackling Obamacare Through Administrative Action

The process of repealing and replacing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as Obamacare, is underway.  While Republicans in Congress are anxious for Obamacare to disappear as soon as possible, most Democrats want the healthcare reform law to be preserved and “fixed.”

GAO’s High Risk List: One Step Forward, Three Steps Back

The latest iteration of the Government Accountability Office’s (GAO) biennial High-Risk Series, released on February 15, 2017, added three programs and removed one.  The new areas included programs serving Indian tribes, environmental liabilities, and the 2020 census, while terrorism-related information sharing disappeared from the list.

Earmark Effort Demonstrates Tone-Deafness About Swamp Drainage

On November 16, 2016, eight days after the momentous election of Donald J. Trump as president (with his promise to “drain the swamp”), House Republicans inexplicably contemplated the restoration of earmarks.  Fortunately, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) forestalled a vote during a meeting of the Republican Conference, promising instead a thoughtful and transparent discussion about the pros and cons of earmarks during the first quarter of 2017.  That date appears to have been moved to the third quarter, following the announcement by House Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (R-Texas) that he will hold public hearings and issue recommendations by July 4, 2017.

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