It is time to expose the wasteful earmarks and stop government from overspending our tax dollars. On Thursday, Congress is expected to vote on HR. 4890, the "Line Item Veto Act of 2006". The Line Item Veto Act will go a long way in exposing and controlling wasteful government spending.
How can any of us forget about the $223 million "Bridge to Nowhere"? The "Bridge to Nowhere" was a $223 million bridge that was added to the Transportation Bill in 2005. This horribly expensive bridge was designed to connect a small island of 50 people to a small city of 8000 people in Alaska. The bill, with this earmark passed the House, Senate and the President signed it into law. Yikes!
This is the type of wasteful government spending that the Line Item Veto Act will end.
This is how the proposed Line Item Veto Act will work:
- The President will be given the authority to pull out a piece of legislation from a spending bill and veto that particular line item.
- This vetoed line item will then be sent back to the Congress for a simple majority vote to either accept or reject spending the money.
- The Congress is required to vote up or down on the individual line item spending within a 14 day window.(if the Congress is not currently in session, the Congress is given a 90 day window to approve or disapprove the spending)
As many already know, President Clinton was given the power of a "line item veto" in the 1990's. President Clinton then proceeded to veto over $2 billion worth of wasteful spending during this time period. In 1998, the Supreme Court ruled that the presidential "line item veto" was unconstitutional. The reason they ruled it unconstitutional is because in our constitution, the Congress is given the power of spending the taxpayer dollars, not the President.
The difference between today's line item veto and the one that was ruled unconstitutional is that the Congress will be given a chance to vote on the individual line item that the President vetoed. This will keep the spending in the hands of the Congress, where our constitution says it belongs.
The benefit to the "Line Item Veto Act of 2006" is that the wasteful spending will now be exposed to the American people. We, the American people, will get a chance to see who is proposing this wasteful spending and we will be able to demand that our members of Congress stop wasting our tax dollars.
The exposure alone, should stop the middle of the night, backroom deals that members of Congress strike with each other over these types of wasteful spending items. No more "if you vote for my bridge to nowhere, I will vote for yours" by our members of Congress.
The "Line Item Veto Act of 2006" was authored by Wisconsin's own Congressman Paul Ryan. Even though a republican congressman authored this bill, it was given by-partisan support by the House Budget Committee. The bill was passed out of committee by a bi-partisan 24-9 vote.
The "Line Item Veto Act of 2006" is NOT a Republican vs. Democrat issue. The "Line Item Veto Act of 2006" is a Taxpayer vs. Government issue. It is time for the taxpayers of America to win against wasteful government spending!
Call your Congressman today and tell them to support HR 4890- "The Line Item Veto Act of 2006"!
Even if you know that your congressman is going to vote yes on this issue- call them anyway- they still need to hear from their constituents!
Feel free to email your congressman also. If you need help in contacting your congressmen, both FreedomWorks and Citizens Against Government Waste are aiding in the process of informing officials to support the line item veto.
The vote should take place on Thursday, June 22- so call or email today!