If Hillary Clinton can run on the Pork ticket, Steny Hoyer makes a fine running mate. The Washington Post reports that Hoyer made the Top Ten Porkers List for 2008, based on an analysis of funding requests pending for next year's budget. And, like Hillary, Hoyer does not forget his contributors when it comes to spreading out the taxpayer dollars:
Even as House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer has joined in steps to clean up pork-barrel spending, the Maryland congressman has tucked $96 million worth of pet projects into next year's federal budget, including $450,000 for a campaign donor's foundation.
Hoyer (D) is one of the top 10 earmarkers in the House for 2008, based on budget requests in bills so far, according to Taxpayers for Common Sense, an independent watchdog group. ...
Consider the $450,000 that Hoyer inserted into a 2008 education spending bill for the California-based InTune Foundation Group, whose Web site describes it as a music-education nonprofit group.
In 2005, InTune got a previous earmark for nearly $500,000 to develop lesson plans on funk music and Nobel Peace laureates. Asked recently how effective that program had been, Education Department officials said they didn't know. InTune hadn't turned in a report on what it did, officials said.
InTune shows why politicians have become so out of tune with the taxpayers. In what universe does "lesson plans on funk music and Nobel Peace laureates" fall under federal jurisdiction? Don't get me wrong; I like Parliament's "Flash Light" just as much as the next guy, but I don't think it's the job of Uncle Sam to teach people how to play it.
Hoyer coughed up a half-million dollars for some funky music, but the recipient never bothered to fulfill its reporting requirements. No problem! Hoyer will give them another half-million dollars to fix their compliance issues. When it comes to earmarks, good money always follows bad, and everything goes down a drain. At least InTune can provide some good music for corruption accompaniment.
Of course, the $31,000 that came to Hoyer from InTune executives and their families has no impact on Hoyer's largesse. I know this, because Hoyer said so. He tells the Post that he's been giving hundreds of thousands of federal monies to InTune because -- I'm not making this up -- he supports the music industry. Isn't the music industry a multi-billion-dollar enterprise? Couldn't they teach someone to play the George Clinton catalog themselves? Maybe someone should just get Hoyer an iTunes subscription rather than an InTune contribution. It would save everyone a lot of money.
InTune isn't alone in Hoyer's thoughts, either. ManTech got over $2 million in earmarks after executives and employees of its parent donated $12,100 to Hoyer for the 2006 election. It made them one of the biggest blocs of contributors in Hoyer's campaign. Of course, that's a coincidence as well, Hoyer insists. He's just a big fan of .... of ..... whatever ManTech produces.
Given Hillary's pork propensity, it looks like we have the ideal running mate for her in Steny Hoyer. The administration which follows theirs will have an opportunity to completely refurnish the White House after they auction off the interior.