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Press Release

Nation's Largest Taxpayer Group Praises Proposed Freeze on "Pork-Barreling," Urges Reforms

For Immediate Release March 11, 2008
Pete Sepp, (703) 683-5700

(Alexandria, Va.) -- Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle apparently are unable to curb their appetites for pork. That's why the 362,000-member National Taxpayers Union (NTU) is urging Senators to go "cold turkey" and support an amendment to the fiscal year 2009 budget resolution for a one-year moratorium on earmarks.

"Taxpayers across the country are fed up with Congress's overindulgence on pork-barrel projects," said NTU President Duane Parde, who spoke at a Capitol Hill rally today in support of the amendment. "Despite repeated promises to scale back or eliminate earmarks, lawmakers have yet to put their words into action -- until now. A one-year moratorium on earmarks would provide at least a temporary fix for Washington's wasteful spending and allow Congress to focus on serious spending reform."

The amendment, offered by Senators Jim DeMint (R-SC), John McCain (R-AZ), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO), would prohibit the consideration of any bill, resolution, amendment, or conference report that contains an earmark or limited tax/tariff benefit. An affirmative vote of two-thirds of the Senate would be needed to override the moratorium.

Parde lauded the bipartisan amendment and noted that the 11,000-plus pork projects in the omnibus appropriations bill passed last December could have been prevented if such a moratorium had been in place -- or if legislators or the President opted for bold action over toothless "reform."

"Senators DeMint, McCain, and McCaskill are true leaders in fiscal responsibility," he concluded. "The time for task forces and lame-duck executive orders is over. The Senate now must make sure that the era of earmarks is over as well by making a clean break and passing this amendment."

NTU is a nonpartisan, nonprofit citizen organization founded in 1969 to work for lower taxes, smaller government, and economic freedom at all levels. Note: For further information on NTU's earmark reform efforts, visit