By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
In addition to funding contraceptives, President Obama’s “economic stimulus” plan will also make billions of taxpayer dollars available to left-wing groups like ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) which has been accused of voter fraud, is reportedly under federal investigation; and played a key role in the housing meltdown.
The House is expected to vote on “The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009” (H.R.1) later this week, but new revelations about the contents of the bill are alarming many Congressional leaders as well as the public. Although the plan’s authors are marketing the bill as an economic stimulus package, the legislation contains a tremendous amount of pork, few measures to stimulate the economy, and exorbitant stimulants for radical left wing causes including:
– $650 million for digital TV coupons.
– $600 million for new cars for the federal government.
– $6 billion for colleges/universities – many which have billion dollar endowments.
– $50 million in funding for the National Endowment of the Arts.
– $44 million for repairs to U.S. Department of Agriculture headquarters.
– $200 million for the National Mall, including $21 million for sod.
House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH) says much of the funding within the proposal will go to programs that already have large, unexpended balances. For example, the bill provides $1 billion for Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) – a program that already has $16 billion on hand. States are also sitting on some $9 billion in unused highway funds – funds that Congress is prepared to rescind later this year.
Even though the legislation contains at least 152 separate spending proposals, Boehner says the plan’s authors can only insure that 34 have any chance at keeping or growing jobs.
The proposal has been billed as a transportation and infrastructure investment package, but only $30 billion of the bill – or three percent – is for road and highway spending. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office found that only 25 percent of this money can be spent in the first year, making the one year total less than $7 billion.
Sadly, if this $825 billion package was better spent, Boehner says it would be enough to give every man, woman and child in America a check for $2,700, or give every person living in poverty in U.S. a check for $22,000.
But instead, the stimulus plan will devote more than a third of its cash to creating new government programs that will saddle every American household with $6,700 in additional debt, paid for by our children and grandchildren, Boehner said.
Even more alarming is the fact that the $825 billion may be just the beginning. Representative David Obey (D-WI) told Roll Call earlier this month, “I would not be surprised to see us go further on some of these programs down the line.”
Concerned citizens are being asked to call their representatives and urge them to reject the stimulus plan. Call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 or find your representative at http://www.visi.com/juan/congress/
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