Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Pork Politicians Revealed: Addicted To Swag

House Committee rejects bill to cut spending on non-essential trinkets and swag

Feature, by Jamison Faught, of Muskogee Politico -
  Late last night, (just before midnight) the House Joint Committee on Appropriations & Budget (JCAB) rejected a measure designed to cut non-essential agency spending on promotional items and other trinkets (the "anti-swag" bill).

  Presented by Rep. George Faught (R-Muskogee), the bill could have saved as much as $30M, which could have avoided additional cuts or paid for half of a $1000 teacher pay raise. Instead, JCAB members shot down the measure, specifically objecting to cutting items such as FFA trophies (which could be paid for by private funds) and stress balls for veterans.

The final vote was 5-21.

These members felt that nonessential promotional spending should be cut, and should be commended:
  • Jon Echols (R)
  • John Paul Jordan (R)
  • Jason Murphey (R)
  • Terry O'Donnell (R)
  • Todd Russ (R)
​These members felt that nonessential promotional spending is just too important, and shouldn't be cut:
  • Scott Biggs (R)
  • Chad Caldwell (R)
  • Dennis Casey (R)
  • Josh Cockroft (R)
  • Jason Dunnington (D)
  • Katie Henke (R)
  • Scott Inman (D)
  • Steve Kouplen (D)
  • Ben Loring (D)
  • Scott Martin (R)
  • Charles Ortega (R)
  • Leslie Osborn (R)
  • Pat Ownbey (R)
  • John Pfeiffer (R)
  • Eric Proctor (D)
  • Dustin Roberts (R)
  • Mike Sanders (R)
  • Earl Sears (R)
  • Shane Stone (D)
  • Emily Virgin (D)
  • Kevin Wallace (R)

Editor's Note:

Blogger, Jamison Faught added;​
  "It's a shame that so many so-called Republicans are rejecting efforts to make the easy cuts (nonessential spending) and instead push for tax hikes."
  Perhaps no other piece of legislation could be more emblematic of the problems with the current legislature.  This is one place where the people of Oklahoma are not detrimentally impacted (unless your snowflake kids need a participation trophy to make them feel that life is worth living.
  This is a case of our Conservative Platform Caucus being defied by both Democrat and Republican camps. It's very difficult to see a narrative to compromise whereby all 3 camps in the legislature give up some of their goals in order to balance a difficult budget gap.
  As things stand, your family will have to endure painful increases in taxes; decreased core state functions, and spare our kids of the deficit-spending "bonds"; so that some district politician can get some free 'pr' face time in front of local groups, and present yet another shiny trinket to make us all feel real special.
  In reality, this 'swag' is more about letting a local incumbent us state funds to endear himself to targeted constituents of his.
  My mother once scolded me; 
​"Nothing good happens at that hour of the night!". I now agree with her a good bit more than I used to.

from Sooner Politics.org - Editorial http://www.soonerpolitics.org/editorial/pork-politicians-revealed-addicted-to-swag

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