USA Today reported this week that billions in earmarks remain tucked into the funding measure that keeps the federal government running for the remainder of the fiscal year. Congress is debating right now how much to cut from the measure, yet these secret earmarks are not being openly discussed by members of Congress.

That’s unfortunate. Earmarks should be low hanging fruit for the cost-conscious legislator. They are special interests projects requested by individual members of Congress.

The USA Today story indicates that the House-passed short term funding measure fully funds $5 billion in existing earmarks. Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) has submitted legislation, in the form of an amendment to a “small business jobs bill,” to remove these projects.

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