Explaining Obama's broken promises

Time magazine tries to explain why Obama isn't breaking his promises. Hint: the new spending is for this year's budget so it doesn't cost. Is this really serious?

On Wednesday, those same House Democrats, led by Pelosi, passed a budget with, by some counts, nearly 9,000 earmarks, worth an estimated $7.7 billion. . . . .

It may seem like yet another example of Washington hypocrisy, but the Obama Administration insists there is no contradiction between its words and actions. The $410 billion budget in question was passed to keep the government running for the rest of fiscal 2009, since Congress agreed on only three of the 15 appropriations bills last year and the stopgap measure it passed expires on March 6. Despite the fact that congressional Democrats crafted much of the bill after Obama was elected, the White House argues that the pork-laden bill — which increases federal spending across a range of Cabinet departments by 8% — is part of the prior Administration's legacy. "What may be next week's bill is last year's legislation," said White House spokesman Robert Gibbs. . . . .

both Obama and Republican nominee John McCain tried to outdo each other with their pledges to rid Washington of the notorious pet projects that legislators slip into spending bills. Obama, who authored 2007 legislation to overhaul congressional ethics rules governing lobbying and earmarks, runs a real credibility risk when he makes exceptions to his own rules. He was already heavily criticized in the first weeks of his Administration for doing just that with respect to some appointees whose lobbying records technically violated the White House's new strict guidelines. . . .

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