Data Troll

Musings of a database designer, right-wing constitutional anarchist and overly idealistic schmuck.

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Location: Texas, United States

A middle-aged database designer, specializing in Oracle. I have a teen-aged son and Chinese wife.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Sam Johnson, Fiscal Conservative??

Just How FISCALLY Conservative is Sam Johnson (District 3, Texas)?

Thanks to Rep. Flake of Arizona (and he ain’t one!) and the Club for Growth, we have a better idea. Rep. Flake forced an up-or-down vote on 19 different ‘earmarks’ those marvelous little pork projects that are district-specific. You know the type of project; the ones that can’t really stand up on their own merit as a project worthy of federal resources, but are used to buy votes back home. They normally have impressive sounding names, but don’t let that fool you; they exist to buy votes or support from individual contributors. Many of these projects might actually be worthwhile; but they are all essentially local, state or commercial issues, not federal.

The amounts of these are tiny by Washington standards, but that makes them all the more indicative; only a Congressperson’s philosophy is at play here.

Well, here is how my representative, The Honorable Sam Johnson, did on this anti-pork effort and it ain’t all that pretty:

T = Voting for the Taxpayer
P = Voting for Pork
A = Absent

T: Vote 190 - Dairy education in Iowa ($229K)
T: Vote 191 - Hydroponic tomato production in Ohio ($180K)
T: Vote 192 - National Grape and Wine Initiative ($100K)
T: Vote 204 - Virginia Science Museum ($250K)
P: Vote 205 - Juniata Locomotive Demonstration ($1,000K)
T: Vote 277 - Swimming pool in Banning, CA ($500K)
T: Vote 278 - 'Facilities' in Weirton, West Virginia ($100K)
T: Vote 279 - Multipurpose facility in Yucaipa, California ($500K)
T: Vote 280 - Strand Theater Arts Center in Plattsburgh, New York ($250K)
T: Vote 298 - Mystic Aquarium in New London, Conn. ($1 M)
P: Vote 299 - The Jason Foundation in Ashburn, VA ($1 M)
P: Vote 302 - Northwest Manufacturing Initiative ($2.5 M)
P: Vote 303 - Lewis Center for Education Research ($4 M)
P: Vote 304 - Leonard Wood Research Institute ($20 M)
A: Vote 334 - Arthur Avenue Retail Market ($150K)
A: Vote 335 - Bronx Council for the Arts in Bronx, N.Y. ($300K)
A: Vote 336 - Johnstown Area Regional Industries ($800K)
A: Vote 337 - Fairmont State University ($900K)
A: Vote 338 - Tourism Development Assoc. in Kentucky ($1 M)

First, my son wasn’t this absent at school last year and he had a lot of medical reasons he could have been; Sam wasn’t elected to miss controlling the purse strings. It might have been an ‘excused absence’; truly important work elsewhere related to fiscal responsibility. But what are the odds?

Second: that’s $26 Million in pure pork that received his votes, while he voted against a little over $3 Million. And this man (who I dearly love on national defense issues) considers himself a fiscal conservative? It sure doesn’t look that way to me; I’m sending his office a link to this post to try to explain it. If they respond (and it’s something other than some no-thought form letter) I’ll post the response.

Say it ain’t so, Sam!