‘Frankly Politically Corrupt’: Democrats Jam Government Funding Bills With Climate, ‘Equity’ Earmarks

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Democrats wedged millions of dollars of earmarks for climate and equity into the government funding package that must pass by Friday evening if the federal government is to remain fully operational.

Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey of Massachusetts, Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and Massachusetts Rep. Stephen Lynch collectively slipped millions of dollars’ worth of earmarks into the appropriations package that legislators are poised to take to a vote on Friday. The Democrats are looking to spend nearly $3 million dollars between the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and financial services funding bills to support “climate resilience” and “equity in manufacturing,” among other initiatives.

Warren and Markey requested $1,150,000 to support “climate resilience and equity” for downtown Boston’s Christopher Columbus Park and Long Wharf in the DHS funding bill. The two lawmakers previously requested a $3 million earmark to support a green police station in Melrose, Massachusetts in the fiscal year 2024 Energy, Water and Development appropriations bill. (RELATED: Senator Vying To Replace Mitch McConnell Crammed Over $116 Million In Earmarks Into Spending Bill)

Meanwhile, Schumer and Gillibrand requested $332,000 from the Small Business Administration for a company called FuzeHub to advance “equity in manufacturing innovation” in the Financial Services and General Government appropriations bill. The two New York Democrats previously asked for a $1 million earmark in the Transportation-Housing and Urban Development appropriations bill to benefit WE ACT, a Harlem-based environmentalist and advocacy group, to help with the construction of WE ACT’s “environmental justice” center; the facility plans to mobilize voters around environmental issues, according to WE ACT’s website.

Lynch’s earmark request in the DHS funding bill would see the federal government spend $1,383,069 to facilitate a “climate resilient neighborhood in the coastal Fort Point Road community” in Weymouth, Massachusetts.

Congressional leadership released the text of the so-called “minibus” appropriations package early Thursday morning, less than 48 hours ahead of the deadline for a partial government shutdown.

“Even though this package has a lot fewer earmarks than the first one, there are still plenty of examples of wasteful and frankly politically corrupt earmarks,” David Ditch, a senior policy analyst for the Heritage Foundation, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “You aren’t supposed to be opposed to equity, you aren’t supposed to be opposed to resilience. They use this pleasant-sounding verbiage as a shield” to obscure “a lot of fluff that is completely unnecessary” for the federal government to spend, Ditch added.

The offices of Warren, Markey, Schumer, Gillibrand and Lynch did not respond immediately to requests for comment.

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