The Earmark Queen….Updated

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THE EARMARK QUEEN….UPDATED….Sarah Palin is the gift that just keeps on giving. By now, we all know that far from being a mortal foe of earmarks, Palin was in fact a pioneer and trailblazer in the earmark world. Small towns in Alaska almost never lobbied for federal pork until Palin showed the way, and her success inspired others to follow.

However, what we didn’t know until the LA Times told us today, is that John McCain’s annual list of objectionable pork singled out Palin’s requests not once, not twice, but three separate times:

Three times in recent years, McCain’s catalogs of “objectionable” spending have included earmarks for this small Alaska town, requested by its mayor at the time — Sarah Palin.

….In 2001, McCain’s list of spending that had been approved without the normal budget scrutiny included a $500,000 earmark for a public transportation project in Wasilla. The Arizona senator targeted $1 million in a 2002 spending bill for an emergency communications center in town — one that local law enforcement has said is redundant and creates confusion. McCain also criticized $450,000 set aside for an agricultural processing facility in Wasilla that was requested during Palin’s tenure.

The McCain campaign’s response to this is exceptionally slick: one part blatant lie (all small towns in Alaska depended on earmarks at the time) and one part clever lie (Palin was so upset about being practically forced to hire a high-powered lobbyist to beg for pork that it scarred her for life and made her the earmark foe she is today). Further questions were no doubt declined since asking about this stuff is plainly sexist and unfair and Governor Palin deserves some privacy on these matters.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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