Why there's only four pages of them suggested. What restraint.
Look -- every state gets "earmarked" federal tax dollars. It's what our representatives in Washington, D. C. do. They get taxpayer dollars sent back to their constituents and home states to fund projects.
Alaska has been very good at getting more than our fair share of "earmarks" for quite some time thanks in large part to the work of Ted Stevens. I'm not saying it's right and I'm not saying it's wrong, I'm merely saying that this is how the system works in D. C. and until something else comes along to replace that system, it will continue to function this way.
But for our governor to claim she was and is "a champion against earmarks" is just a blatant falsehood. For her to renege on her original promise of support of the Gravina Island Access Project while accepting and re-purposing the money to other projects and by her failing to match the earmark dollar for dollar with state funds to complete that project (a contingency of why the original earmark was even granted) is completely dishonest, unethical and dishonorable.
Yes, Alaska DOES need important infrastructure improvements. Just like governor Palin was originally quoted as saying about the project. So why didn't governor Palin follow through with her original promise of support for the project?
The other issue to consider is that when Stevens went nuclear on the issue of earmarks and started pointing out the hypocrisy of all the other legislators who do the same thing for their own states, the controversy vanished from the political scene, only to be occasionally referenced by the long flogged "bridges to nowhere" meme. Soundbites triumphed rather than all of them choosing to deal with the hypocrisy directly.
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