Campaign 2010

Dec 14, 2010

“Prince of Pork” Hal Rogers’ Hometown Newspaper Says To Expect “More of The Same”

“Prince of Pork” Hal Rogers’ Hometown Newspaper Says To Expect “More of The Same” from Washington Republicans

Even the hometown newspaper of the ‘Prince of Pork’ Hal Rogers is panning his selecting as Chairman of the Appropriations Committee, noting that things are likely to stay the same in Washington. Rogers sought 135 earmarks at a cost of $246 million in the past two years alone.

Rogers claims prize post

Lexington Herald Leader Editorial

http://www.kentucky.com/2010/12/14/1565736/rogers-claims-prize-post.html

Those who were expecting the Tea Party surge to bring a wave of change to Washington must be scratching their heads.

Republicans, led by Sen. Mitch McConnell, struck a deal with Democratic President Barack Obama for a huge slug — $900 billion — of deficit spending while House Republicans elected Rep. Hal Rogers, the "Prince of Pork," chairman of the appropriations committee.

Rogers, of Somerset, earned his nickname through his uncanny ability to bring the bacon home to his Kentucky district during 30 years in Congress. In the current fiscal year, he sponsored or co-sponsored 50 earmarks totaling $93.4 million, which ranked him 10th out of 435 representatives, according to the non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics.

But Rogers is on the wagon now. He's sworn off earmarks and promised to usher in a new era of fiscal austerity.

Not to worry, though. As chairman of the appropriations committee, Rogers won't need earmarks to funnel federal tax dollars to Kentucky or his other causes.

He'll be holding the purse strings of every agency of the federal government and writing the federal budget. Under those circumstances, agency heads can be counted on to see the merit in his ideas and pet projects.

The likelihood that Rogers would ascend to such an important chairmanship is one of the reasons we cited for endorsing him. Rogers' poor district is certainly in need of all the help it can get.

We just wish Rogers would more effectively target the taxpayers' largesse at solving the district's deep and myriad problems.

Congratulations to Rogers on reaching what would be considered the pinnacle of his political career.

In doing so, he's perhaps proven the adage that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Learn more about Hal “Prince of Pork” Rogers by clicking here.

BACKGROUND

  • GOP gets queasy over earmark. “So some Republicans are discussing exemptions to the earmark ban…” [POLITICO, 12/9/10]
  • 'Prince of Pork' to Approps chair (POLITICO).  Rep. Hal Rogers may have sworn off earmarks as he lobbied his way into the powerful House Appropriations Committee chairmanship, but there’s a reason he’s earned the nickname “Prince of Pork.”  Over the past two years, Rogers has requested $175,613,300 in earmarks, including funding for a cheetah protection nonprofit that his daughter works for. [POLITICO, 12/9/10]