Friday, January 21, 2005
Gotta Love Congress
This was too funny not to post: According to a report in the Lexington Herald-Leader, Rep. Harold Rogers, R-Ky., apparantly had a $500,000 earmark added to the FY05 appopriations bill. The $500k is to build a parking lot for a private resort owned by a campaign contributor. Rep. Rogers' language appears to direct the Army Corps of Engineers to assist J.D. Hamilton, who owns the Lee's Ford Marina Resort in Somerset, Ky. The report quotes Tom Hale, the corps' operations manager at the lake as saying that, "the corps did not ask for [the money]. This is something that Hal Rogers put in there." This gets better, it appears that Mr. Hamilton has donated thousands of dollars in recent years to Republican political campaigns (including the federaly madated maximum $2,000 last year to Rogers), state and national Republican parties, and $5,000 to Tom Delay's legal defense fund (it seems only fair to ask why Tom Delay has a legal defense fund if he's not afraid of some legal effects of his actions?). According to the report, when asked about his Congressman's benevolence, Mr. Hamilton replied, "That's the American system." Oh wait, here's the best part, it also appears that Rep. Rogers, who was on the short list to become Appropriations Committee Chairman, had pledged to fight earmarks if he won the post, which ultimetly went to Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-CA).