Author Archive

David Baumann


Guarding the Purse Strings

Members of Congress are making the earmark process more transparent, but they’re still asserting their authority to direct money to special projects.


Reliance on supplemental funding draws bipartisan attack

Lawmakers say administration’s method of paying for wars and other emergency needs makes it difficult to account for the true costs.


Legislator takes stand in support of earmarks

Idaho representative advocates practice as a way to limit the executive branch’s influence over spending decisions.


Spending proposals leave moderates in tough position

Fat has already been trimmed from the easy places, leaving few palatable options for cuts.


Growth in earmarks limits agencies’ flexibility

Increase has been driven by the budget-neutral practice of directing agencies where to spend money, without boosting funding.


Army Corps officials too often acquiesced to Congress' wishes, critics claim

Too many projects slugged as "high priority" that should have been deemed lower priorities than levee protection.


Appropriations process mired in same troubles as previous years

Senate rules allowing lengthy debates and myriad amendments may bog down the process.


Bush's best-laid budget plans go awry

George W. Bush promised balanced federal budgets and a smaller government. How times have changed.


Following the money on Iraq, homeland security not easy

The Bush administration has a great deal of discretion in spending war funds, and "homeland security" remains ill-defined.


Rhetoric often at odds with reality of appropriations process

Congress and the president take credit for creating federal programs and launching ambitious initiatives, but then they often don't put their money where their mouth is.


Cash Clash


Bush administration faces performance pressure

Since he took office, President Bush has been telling federal agencies to be performance-oriented. With GOP majorities in the House and Senate, the pressure is now on the White House to meet the high performance standards set by the voters.