WasteWatcher is CAGW's monthly dispatch to members of the news media. Culled from dense General Accounting Office reports, obscure news items, and the occasional account of a whistleblower, WasteWatcher's stories captured headlines by transforming the dry matter of federal financial management into side-splitting -- albeit infuriating -- tales of government ineptitude.

The North Carolina Winston-Salem Journal said of WasteWatcher that it is "a monthly publication that probably deserves wider dissemination than it gets...even heavily discounted to allow for the ax CAGW is grinding, the news from its reports is high in shock value and humor (of the gallows variety)."

Obamacare Still Vulnerable to Fraud

By Curtis Kalin

Wastewatcher, March 2017

Even before Congress failed to pass a repeal and replacement for the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), a November 2016 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report again exposed rampant and systematic fraud in the application process.

“Results of Enrollment Testing for the 2016... more

America First, Duplicative Programs Last

By Rachel Cole

WasteWatcher, March 2017

On March 16, 2017, the White House released its budget, “America First – A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again.”  This “skinny budget” increases spending for defense by $54 billion and cuts an equal amount of money for duplicative and wasteful programs.  The budget calls also cuts... more

CFP-Bane: Warding Off the Unconstitutional CFPB

By William M. Christian

WasteWatcher, March 2017

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has been, since its inception as the brainchild of then-Harvard professor and now Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), the nanny state bane of conservatives and free-market champions.

In... more

Obscuring the Cost Growth of the “Little Crappy Ship”

By Sean Kennedy

WasteWatcher, March 2017

The Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), referred to as the “Little Crappy Ship” by some inside the Navy, has been a disaster since its inception.  The difficulties experienced by the program range from a vaguely defined mission, a lack of... more

The Risky Business of Federal IT

By Deborah Collier

WasteWatcher, March 2017

Information technology (IT) has consistently been a top priority for Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) since it was founded in 1984 following the release of the Grace Commission report.  The commission found that the federal government’s computer systems were outdated and incompatible, and much more needed to be done to upgrade... more

To Kill or Not to Kill Quill

By Andrew Nehring

WasteWatcher, March 2017

In 1992, the Supreme Court ruled in Quill v. North Dakota that if a company did not have a “physical nexus” within the state, that state could not require the company to collect sales taxes from its customers.  However, residents of states with income taxes are supposed to voluntarily pay a “use tax” on such out-of-state... more

Tackling Obamacare Through Administrative Action

By Elizabeth Wright

WasteWatcher, February 2017

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.”

On January 20, the day... more

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

By Sean Kennedy

WasteWatcher, February 2017

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... more

Earmark Effort Demonstrates Tone-Deafness About Swamp Drainage

By William M. Christian

WasteWatcher, February 2017

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. ... more

The Postal Service Reform Act Does Not Deliver

By Rachel Cole

WasteWatcher, February 2017

It is no secret that the United States Postal Service (USPS) is broke and broken.  The agency’s low standards of delivery are rarely achieved, it has billions in losses and unfunded ... more


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CAGW Names Sen. Bernie Sanders June 2017 Porker of the Month

Sen. Sanders is CAGW's June Porker of the Month for his foolish quest to impose a single-payer healthcare system on the United States.