U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston championed more earmark spending last year than any other Georgia congressman. Now he’s running to lead the House Appropriations Committee. Kingston touted his anti-earmark credentials Friday in announcing his bid for Appropriations chair. Data shows he sponsored or co-sponsored $211 million in earmarks since 2008.
Gov.-elect Nathan Deal put his name on three earmarks in his last year in Congress, funneling $2.1 million in federal money to three Georgia recipients. All three are represented by lobbyists Rob Leebern and/or Joe Tanner, who are now serving on his newly-appointed transition team. Those clients are among more than 130 represented by lobbyists serving on Deal’s transition and inaugural efforts. Health-care and financial-services interests dominate those client lists.
A new, searchable database lets you sift through $20 billion in congressional pork, also known as earmarks, for the last two fiscal years. The data shows Georgia collected $2.1 billion of the national total. Just looking at “solo” sponsorship, U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop led Georgia’s congressional delegation with $46.9 million directed to the state in FY 2008 and 2009.