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http://ssrn.com/abstract=1483406
 
 

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Eliminating Earmarks: Why the Congressional Line Item Vote Can Succeed Where the Presidential Line Item Veto Failed


Jason Iuliano


Harvard University - Law School - Alumni; Princeton University - Department of Politics

October 5, 2009

West Virginia Law Review, Vol. 112, 2010

Abstract:     
Congressional earmarking is an issue of growing concern in the United States. Although, at present, it only accounts for a small percentage of federal expenditures, recent trends indicate that such pork-barrel spending will soon be a significant contributor to the national debt. The federal government must work to control this problem before it becomes unmanageable. One recent attempt to reduce the number of earmarks was the Line Item Veto Act of 1996. However, on both constitutional grounds and in practice, this measure failed. Instead of acknowledging these shortcomings and crafting innovative solutions, lawmakers have repeatedly introduced bills that would once again grant the president the line item veto power.

This Article, in contrast, develops an entirely new process — the congressional line item vote. This reform forces House members to vote on individual provisions of a bill. If implemented, the congressional line item vote would decrease the deficit, eliminate earmarks, reduce log-rolling, and increase congressional accountability.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 44

Keywords: Earmarks, Pork-barrel spending, Budget, Deficit, Debt, National debt, Line item veto, Congress, Line item vote, Transparency, Accountability, Earmarking, Reform

JEL Classification: K10, D72

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Date posted: October 6, 2009 ; Last revised: July 9, 2010

Suggested Citation

Iuliano, Jason, Eliminating Earmarks: Why the Congressional Line Item Vote Can Succeed Where the Presidential Line Item Veto Failed (October 5, 2009). West Virginia Law Review, Vol. 112, 2010. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1483406

Contact Information

Jason Iuliano (Contact Author)
Harvard University - Law School - Alumni ( email )
5163 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Princeton University - Department of Politics ( email )
Corwin Hall
Princeton, NJ 08544-1012
United States
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