Leave it to the Senate to present a heroic front after House Democrats turned their backs on the president and sold out their constituents by refusing to agree to extend our current tax rates. Senators came through with a fix, S.Amdt. 4753, that reeks of bipartisan bonhomie. This is compromise legislation, but “compromise” has many meanings. Senators would argue that compromise, by definition, means earmarks. Taxpayers who have to fund this compromise might argue that their position has been compromised, as legislators continue to spend the country into the ground while indulging in disingenuous talk of reducing debt and the deficit.
S.Amdt. 4753 is an embarrassment that includes earmark spending for everything from a $45,000,000 sex trafficking initiative that includes grants to fund police salaries, to a $5 billion ethanol subsidy, to protections for Caribbean rum, to John Kerry’s Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act.
The Christmas spirit is alive in Washington, though the middle class families that are the excuse for these giveaways may have a difficult time summoning an equivalent measure of merriness. This is not about job creation, it is not about the middle class tax rate, it is not about small business, and it is not about any of the other now-sacred cows that were created during the recession as an excuse to spend. This is about earmarking, and looking forward to the 2012 elections.
The Senate should be ashamed.