The Hill: Dem leader Durbin: Senate is 'out of the business of earmarks'
Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) on Wednesday said the Senate will not pass spending legislation that contains earmarks, even though he personally opposes banning the practice.
The Democrat said that he does not think Obama will have to make good on his threat in the State of the Union to veto any legislation that contains earmarked spending.
“[House Speaker] Boehner is not going to send a bill over with earmarks, and we are out of the business of earmarks,” he said.
His statement came one day after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) dismissed an earmark ban as "a lot of pretty talk" that would cede too much power to the executive branch.
A ban on earmarked spending would give "the president more power, and he's got enough power already," Reid said Tuesday.
AP: Durbin says congressional funding of individually designated projects is ending
If so, that could imperil a cherished practice of U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye of Hawaii.
Inouye, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, has long defended earmarks as a constitutional prerogative. He once called himself the "No. 1 earmarks guy" in Congress.
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