Actual Grit

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Ron Paul’s Latest Ad On Fiscal Sanity Is A Total Lie

Ron Paul released this new ad about fiscal sanity and spending.

It’s a total lie.

Ron Paul has been one of the major leaders in pork spending and waste for years. His critics on this come from all across the political spectrum.

Let’s start with criticism from The Club For Growth.

Ron Paul supporters aren’t going to like today’s editorial ($) in the Wall Street Journal. For that matter, neither will the PorkBusters.

Texas Congressman Ron Paul — libertarian gadfly and current Republican Presidential hopeful — has made a name for himself as a critic of overspending. But it seems even he can’t resist the political allure of earmarks.

After reporters started asking questions, the Congressman disclosed his requests this year for about $400 million worth of federal funding for no fewer than 65 earmarks. They include such urgent national wartime priorities as an $8 million request for the marketing of wild American shrimp and $2.3 million to fund shrimp-fishing research.

When we called Mr. Paul’s office for an explanation, his spokesperson offered up something worthy of pork legends Tom DeLay or Senator Robert C. Byrd: “Reducing earmarks does not reduce government spending, and it does not prohibit spending upon those things that are earmarked,” the spokesman said. “What people who push earmark reform are doing is they are particularly misleading the public — and I have to presume it’s not by accident.”

Link

Despite this impressive record, Ron Paul’s history contains some curious indiscretions, including a vote for $232 million for federally mandated election reform (only one of 21 Republicans to vote for it)  and a vote against the line-item veto —even after it was modified to pass constitutional muster.  Paul’s record on pork was outstanding in 2006, voting for all 19 of Jeff Flake’s anti-pork amendments in 2006,  but his record took a stark turn for the worse in 2007, in which Paul received an embarrassing 29% on the Club for Growth’s RePORK Card, voting for only 12 of the 50 anti-pork amendments.   A year later, he voted against an amendment that would strip out all earmarks from a spending bill.

Some of the outrageous pork projects Paul voted to keep include $231,000 for the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association’s Urban Center; $129,000 for the “perfect Christmas tree project;” $300,000 for the On Location Entertainment Industry Craft Technician Training Project in California; $150,000 for the South Carolina Aquarium; and $500,000 for the National Mule and Packers Museum in California.   In 2007, Ron Paul requested more than sixty earmarks “worth tens of millions of dollars for causes as diverse as rebuilding a Texas theater, funding a local trolley, and helping his state’s shrimp industry.”   Paul’s affection for earmarks was also on display when he voted against a proposal that would “require the Education secretary to submit an explanation to Congress if grants authorized by the bill are not awarded competitively.”

In defense of his support for earmarks, Rep. Paul took the “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” position, arguing that “I don’t think they should take our money in the first place.  But if they take it, I think we should ask for it back.”   This is a contradiction of Paul’s self-proclaimed “opposition to appropriations not authorized within the enumerated powers of the Constitution.”

Paul also voted to bail out the Highway Trust Fund to the tune of $8 billion in 2008.

Link

Ron Paul may be a  fiscal deficit hawk on some issues, but let’s get one thing clear, his latest ad is a lie. He’ll bring home anything that brings home the votes and for this Texas congressman, that includes the pork.

Ron Paul flies in the face of his own party on this issue. The GOP issued an earmark moratorium, yet Ron Paul was one of four Republicans to request earmarks for the 2011 budget.

U.S. Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) was one of only four House Republicans to break rank from the party and request earmarks despite a Republican Conference earmark moratorium. Paul sent 41 earmark requests totaling $157,093,544 for the 2011 Fiscal Year. His largest single request was $19,500,000 for a naval training ship at the Texas Maritime Academy in Galveston, followed by a $18,126,000 to provide maintenance on the Matagorda Ship Channel.

For Fiscal Year 2010, Paul requested 54 total earmarks, adding up to $398,460,640 in pork that the former presidential candidate sought to bring home to his district. These requests were made prior to the House Republican Conference’s voluntary ban on filing earmarks.

Link

Ron Paul justifies his pork spending by saying he puts it in the bills but votes against it. What? Yes, he is for it, before he’s against it.

Also he gives justification for it by saying that the money for his district would get spent elsewhere if it wasn’t claimed. This is simply untrue. I came across this explanation of the process.

At the beginning of the budget cycle, Congress votes on how much to appropriate to the departments in the Executive Branch (In fact, Constitutionally, this is the ONLY way to do so). These voting members include Ron Paul. Now, when you say it does not increase spending, that only means in the CURRENT budget cycle. What happens, in actuality, is when they reappropriate money originally requested for that department in the Executive Branch, it creates a budget shortfall in said department of the money they have requested legitatately. This causes the requesting department to ask for even more in the next budget cycle, which means it DOES increase spending. So, in other words, specific project money appropriated legitimately to a departmental budget is now reappropriated on a whim for a Congress members wet dream of a project. The Legislative branch is the only branch tasked with spending taxpayer money, and that holds true whether Ron Paul tells you that’s the case or that the Executive Branch is “stealing it”.

I’ll close this with a video of Ron Paul explaining himself to Tim Russert.

http://www.conservativesnetwork.com/2011/12/06/ron-pauls-latest-ad-on-fiscal-sanity-is-a-total-lie/

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