Here’s an interesting interpretation of a “fair, open, and democratic process:” after both Houses of Congress pass a spending bill, one Representative gets his hands on it and does a little creative editing to put in his own funding earmark.
First up, note that Representative Young’s party affiliation is mentioned in the second paragraph, on first mention of his name. That’s the appropriate style; if only the Washington Post could remember that rule when the identifying letter is (D) as well as when it’s (R).
Secondly, let’s look at this matter. Young altered a bill AFTER it had been passed by both Houses of Congress, and was on its way to the White House. Maybe I’m a bit naive or ignorant, but I thought that whenever there was a change made to a bill in one House, it has to go back to the other for approval. (This is where I think “conference committees” come into play.) Young subverted the intent, at least, of the Constitution and the fundamental nature of our legislative process for his own benefit.
Yup, his own benefit. He’s from Alaska and the earmark is for Florida, but the beneficiaries of his largesse (out of OUR pockets, not his, the scumbag) forked over $40,000 for his campaign.
Far be it from me to suggest that there was any quid pro quo behind Rep. Young’s actions. I’d like to think that a member of Congress could be bought for a mere three months’ pay. If you wanted me to risk not only my job, but jail, you’d have to guarantee me a hell of a lot more.
The funniest part is that the locals don’t even want the project. Only the developers do. And thanks to Young’s work, they can’t even take that money and use it for something they find more worthwhile. They gotta spend it or give it back — and when was the last time a government agency ever gave back money it had been allocated?
I’ve long believed that, when it comes to members of Congress, the legal principle should be “guilty until proven innocent.” Let’s take Young and Representative William Jefferson
Clinton (dang, I thought I had that under control) and toss them in the same cell with Randy “Duke” Cunningham.
Only because we can’t just string them up, “pour encourager les autres.”