Tea Partiers slam 'hyporkrisy' on the Hill
December 16th, 2010
08:01 AM ET
4 years ago

Tea Partiers slam 'hyporkrisy' on the Hill

Washington (CNN) - Tea Party leaders have "fire coming out of their ears" over the massive $1.1 trillion dollars Omnibus spending bill pending before Congress. Tucked into the legislation that would keep the government running for the next fiscal year are more than $8 billion dollars in earmarks, requested by lawmakers in both parties.

It sounds like "hyporkrisy" to Tea Party Express Chairman Amy Kremer. Her group backed GOP candidates in the 2010 election who promised to root out wasteful pork-barrel spending in Washington. She warns any republican who supports the measure risks a primary challenge in the next election cycle.

"We will go after them. We're not going to accept it. We are absolutely not going to accept it. I mean there are all kinds of pork in there," Kremer told CNN.

Several top republicans in Congress, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, have asked for millions of dollars worth of earmarks in the Omnibus bill. According to the spending watchdog Taxpayers for Common Sense, Cornyn has 51 earmarks in the legislation totaling $93 million dollars. The group says McConnell's 42 earmarks add up to $86 million.

At a news conference Wednesday, Cornyn and Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, a potential 2012 presidential candidate, vowed to vote against the measure they ridiculed as the "ominous bill." When pressed by reporters about his own earmarks in the bill, Cornyn denied he was being hypocritical. "I intend to vote against those earmarks because I think the American people sent a message on November the 2nd saying they want a new way of operating in Washington."

Sen. John McCain has spent the last two days on his Twitter account, tweeting his favorite earmarks hidden in the legislation. Last night the Arizona Republican pointed to an earmark worth $10 million dollars establishing a foundation honoring the late Democratic congressman John Murtha, who was considered one of the kings of pork on Capitol Hill.

The Omnibus controversy is just the latest irritant to many Tea Party leaders who oppose the tax cut compromise between the White House and republican leaders in Congress.

"I know the politicians think we won't remember when elections roll around," said Mark Meckler, a co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots. "We're smarter than they think," he warned.


Filed under: Congress • Tea Party movement
soundoff (88 Responses)
  1. HomeSkillet

    Well, I don't agree with that last comment – that Tea Party members are "smarter than they think" ... I mean, you're a GOP-backed, Limbaugh-approved, nutjob group so you're exactly as smart as I think, if ya' catch my drift. Otherwise, this article is HILARIOUS!! Let's stand back and watch the good 'old boys and girls of the jack!$$ group turn on each other. Somebody, get me some popcorn!!!

    December 16, 2010 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  2. welches, oregon

    next election cycle....next election.........
    how many times have we heard that!

    December 16, 2010 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  3. Jeff

    It's not just tea partiers who are upset. We're all sick of the waste. Don't give me any of that story about how it's boosting the economy. The bottom line is that you don't create jobs by taking money away from employers through taxes.

    December 16, 2010 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  4. RG

    Hmmm, GOP not complying with anti-pork and anti-deficit policies that JUST got them elected. Do you think they lied to get elected? Someday we'll realize that this is all a show for the general public, and that corporations own both parties and control our economy.

    December 16, 2010 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  5. Right Leaning Independent

    It is obvious to me that Washingotn did not hear us this past election!! We have a bunch of immature fools running our country that have never had to balace a check book.. It is time to stand up and demand they become fiscally responsible! These hypocrites rail about banks being irresponsible and than turn around and try to pass this excessive spending bill.. Most Americans are not as stupid as they would like to believe.. We need to keep voting these fools right out in 2012... Thanks Nevada for voting to keep the "never saw another persons tax dollar I didn't want to spend" Reid back into the Senate....

    December 16, 2010 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  6. carrotroot

    I have news for the Tea Party folks ... you elected these guys.

    December 16, 2010 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  7. Heat

    Thank God for the Tea Party - You'd NEVER see the Demonrats calling out these crooks!

    December 16, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  8. Firedog51

    And put in someone like Bachman, Angle or O'Donnell? The tea party s getting backed over by the reality wagon. The truth is they will not have an effect on the way business is done and if they don't bring home the bacon to their state they will all be one hit wonders destined for the dust bin of history. Just do it openly, Cronyn and Thune looked like absolute asses on the podium yesterday because they know the budget will pass due to what's at stake. Most of these pork projects don't benefit the American taxpayer, however it was pork that fixed the freeway bridge in Minneapolis that collapsed into the Mississippi a few years back and anyone in their right mind would support that.

    December 16, 2010 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  9. Aaron

    As someone who thinks the Tea Party is one of the saddest, most destructive, regressive, and humorous forces in American political history, it disturbs me greatly that I agree with them. But another trillion dollars for tax cuts? Hopefully this isn't the aircraft carrier that breaks the camels back.

    December 16, 2010 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  10. Debbie from Arizona

    Republicans have no shame. McConnell publicly criticizes this because it's 2000 pages long and full of earmarks and of course he blames Democrats for them. Then we learn that between just two Republican Senators they put in 93 earmarks worth 179 million dollars. I hope the Tea Party and all Americans remember this in the 2012 elections.

    December 16, 2010 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  11. GonzoinHouston

    Oh, next year is going to be fun. Left vs right, TP vs GOP, Dems vs irrelevancy, and TP vs reality. You can't make this stuff up! Cornyn's actions, incidentally, are fairly typical, and members of both parties are guilty of this at various times; they make sure they get their share of pork in a bill they expect to see passed, and then try to look responsible by opposing the bill. He'll vote against it, but only when he's sure it will pass anyway.

    What is it about politics that attracts the worst sort people, and then brings out the worst in them?

    I'm beginning to understand why the GOP is so desperate to get the other major bill, the tax bill, passed before year's end. They have no idea how the TP's will vote on such things.

    December 16, 2010 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  12. Living in America

    Let's see GM paid back the government 2 billion dollars from the bailout that everyone complained about and this didn't make headline news but the Weed excuse Tea Party did. Wow and you call this professional journalism.

    December 16, 2010 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  13. Willie12345

    The pressure needs to be kept on all the politicians. Never let up !!

    December 16, 2010 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  14. Vort

    When they make earmarks and lobbying illegal I will finally beleive in our government once again. Until then they are crooks. Business as usual. ALL of them.

    December 16, 2010 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  15. Framous

    Can anyone say jail sentences for them all too?

    December 16, 2010 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  16. CNN=Fox

    These people should also know that there own politicians – REPUBLICANS – also have lots of earmarks. Sen. Thune (R-SD) complained about all the pork in a radio interview, but when asked about the $100 million he wants for himself, he didn't quite know how to answer. Basically he said it was all bad except for what he requested. Republicans are simply incapable of being anything but hypocrites.

    December 16, 2010 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  17. Patty2012

    I'm not a "Tea Party" person.......but this time.......I TOTALLY agree! Another approx. 2,000 pages that they need to PASS to see what's in it!

    Is this a sick Christmas joke?

    December 16, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  18. Roberto

    As much as I think the TP is a good thing, they must be easily duped. In many cases, they voted for the same Republicans that spent like drunken sailors under the Bush II administration. Anyone who believes they're changed their ways needs to see me about the sale of some swamp land.

    December 16, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  19. paul

    Republicans are the masters of saying one thing before the election and then doing the opposite once in office. The difference here it that the Republicans promised no "pork" for two years. Maybe the voting public will wise up to their lies and fear tactics when it comes to the next election. They are counting on voters to "forget". The Dems hold some of the blams as well, although I didn't hear them making it a party platform and going "media" with it.

    December 16, 2010 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  20. jake

    It don't make any sense to put earmarks in a bill, then vote against it. But any more the goverment ( both sides ) don't make any sense.

    December 16, 2010 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  21. a in austin

    Cornyn said he wasn't going to vote for the bill – yea right. They want the TPers to think one thing but are going to continue to do what they've been doing – spend, spend, spend. The GOP sure hood-winked the TPers....

    December 16, 2010 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  22. martin

    You put the 'Left' pork in, you take the "Left" pork out, you put the 'Right' pork in, and you shake it all about.

    December 16, 2010 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  23. DJ in TX

    So the Tea Party is now realizing some of these GOP leaders are full of crap. I'm a Democrat and don't necessarily like earmarks. ALL states have needs for federal funds, but put your need out there, and get it through normal appropiations. Hypocrisy at its best.

    December 16, 2010 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  24. Walsh

    This is why we threw all those bums out in November but we did not get the biggest scumbag of all and that is Harry Reid. Reid is the centerpiece of the worst Congress in history and this is why. They had all the time to write the budget and failed to do so for 11 month and now want to cram it all in with pork before responsible pople take office. They knew taxes were coming up and did nothing. This is why they have the lowest approval rating in modern history.

    December 16, 2010 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  25. susan

    First they tell us that the American People want sane government, then they do something this stupid. Congress has a low rating for a reason. They are arrogant, treacherous, lying people who really don't know how the average person lives. They have no concept of reality. McConnell and his bunch are just as bad as any Dem, even though they profess they are doing what the American people want. They arent!! It's time to cut pork from ANY budget. The American people don't want studies of Maple Syrup. They have been making it for hundreds of years, and now they say they need money for a study in VT? Get real. The biggest offender is a Republican Congressman from FL. I don't believe this! I am so angry!

    December 16, 2010 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
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