Weighing the fat in current spending

President Barack Obama makes a statement from the Diplomatic Room of the White House -- February 26, 2009

TEXT OF STORY

Steve Chiotakis: The Senate gave its OK yesterday to a spending bill that'll
keep the government running through October. President Obama is expected to sign that measure, the $410 billion budget, today. The president says he's not happy with all the fat included in it, and some of his opponents are complaining about it even more. The latest from Ashley Milne-Tyte.


Ashley Milne-Tyte: The bill contains an 8 percent increase in spending over last year. It includes more money for things like food aid and housing vouchers for the poor, and the Agriculture Department and Amtrak.

But Republicans and some Democrats complain the bill is overflowing with funding for special projects close to lawmakers' hearts. John McCain has been posting his outrage on Twitter.

The bill has at least $5.5 billion in earmarks. More than a million dollars will go to the nonprofit Helen Keller International to give eyeglasses to students with vision problems. The list also includes $238,000 for the Polynesian Voyaging Society in Honolulu. President Obama is expected to announce new rules on earmarks today.

I'm Ashley Milne-Tyte for Marketplace.

About the author

Ashley Milne-Tyte is the host of a podcast about women in the workplace called The Broad Experience.

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